Pets - Tip Sheet

an image of the cover of a book titled "Pets" showing a young boy hugging four husky puppies- IT IS ESSENTIAL TO PRE-TEACH THE CONCEPTS INTRODUCED IN EACH BOOK PRIOR TO READING! -

Pets - Teacher Tip Sheet

Yellow Series - Book 7 - Pets

Grapheme/Phoneme Correspondence

Tips and Activities to Try

Introduced in This Book

  • <v>/v/, <k>/k/

Previously Introduced


  • all short vowels


  • <c>/k/, <g>/g/, <s>/s/ and /z/, <d>/d/, <h>/h/, <m>/m/, <n>/n/, <p>/p/, <t>/t/, <b>/b/, <f>/f/, <r>/r/, <l>/l/, <z>/z/, <x>/ks/


  • <th>/TH/ voiced (only in the), <ck>/k/, <ff>/f/

Additional Concepts

  • final consonant cluster <nd> (only in and)

Key Concepts to Understand

  • phonemes can be represented by more than one grapheme
  • students now have 3 ways to represent the phoneme /k/: <c>, <k>, <ck>
  • we use <c> to represent /k/ unless it is followed by an <e>, <i> or <y> (then it is pronounced as /s/), or when /k/ is found at the end of a base (e.g., milk, bank, sick)
  • some words such as kangaroo, kayak, etc., are not full English words, and therefore do not follow this convention
  • when teaching <c>/k/, be careful to stay away from phases like “<c> says /k/”, because <c> also represents other phonemes and can be part of other digraphs such as in school, science, and back

Words and Phrases for Reading and Writing

Here is a list of words that can be used for phonemic awareness activities, reading, dictation, games cards, etc.:

  • kit, kick, kid, kip, kids, vet, van, vets, pet, pets, dock, sock, peck, deck, lick, sick, sack, tack, red, bed, hen, den, net, set, fox, box, six, mix, fix, fax

Here is a word chain you could complete with blending cards:

  • kit → kid → kip → kick → lick → sick → sip→ sit → set → vet → vets → pets → pet → pen → pan → van → vans

Here are phrases that can be used for reading and/or dictation practice. These phrases can be combined to create sentences. A good opportunity arises to address syntax if the resulting sentence is not grammatically correct (e.g., Six kids packs the kit. → Six kids pack the kit.)

Noun Phrases

Verb Phrases

Prepositional Phrases

his vans

can kick

to the deck

six kids

gets his socks

in the van

Kip and his pets

can get a van

on the rocks

a big red van

packs the kit

off to the vet


You can differentiate for your students by dropping some of the words in these phases (e.g., “Kip and his pets” can just be “Kip”).

Orthographic Conventions/Patterns and Generalisations

Tips and Activities to Try

  • <k> as /k/ (before <e>, <i> or <y>)

Key Concepts to Understand

  • use <k> to represent /k/ before <e>, <i>, or <y>
  • use <ck> to represent /k/ in final base position, after a single short vowel
  • complete English words do not end in <v>


Tips and Activities to Try

Introduced in this Book

  • suffix <-s> (both /s/ and /z/) as plural

Previously Introduced

  • suffix <-s> third person singular

Note: there are three functions of suffix <-s>: plural, third person singular verb present tense, possessive

Key Concepts to Understand

  • review: a base is a structural element that forms the foundation of a written word (the term “root” refers to the etymological/historical source of the base)
  • a free base is a base that functions independently/forms a complete English word on its own
  • a suffix is a morpheme attached after a base - often changes the grammatical structure or the “sense” of a word
  • one of the functions of suffix <-s> is to indicate the base is plural
  • the suffix <-s> represents the unvoiced phoneme /s/ if it follows an unvoiced phoneme (e.g., jumps, cats)
  • the suffix <-s> represents the voiced phoneme /z/ if it follows a voiced phoneme (e.g., dogs, calls)

Activities to Try

  • introducing word sums can be valuable at this time
    • pet + s → pets
    • kid + s → kids
    • van + s → vans
  • use the phrase “is rewritten as” for the arrow in a word sum

High Frequency Words

Tips and Activities to Try

  • “to”

Key Concepts to Understand

  • to, two and too are homophones (words that are pronounced the same but have different meanings)
  • homophones usually have different spelling, which helps readers differentiate between the words
  • to is a function word, and as such, it has as few letters as possible (e.g., to has fewer letters than too and two)
  • the <o> is often pronounced as a schwa - say the sentence, “I am going to the store” to help demonstrate this
  • making connections to similar words such as do and who can help students remember the spelling of to

Comprehension Corner - Pets

Vocabulary Development

  • Can you think of a word that means the same as kid?

Making Connections

  • Do you have a pet? If you were able to get any pet, which would you choose?


  • How do you think Kim is feeling on page 13? Why?
  • Why do you think the author states, “It is fun to get pets!”?


  • Which page of this text was your favourite? Explain why you enjoyed reading it


Tip Sheet written by Shari Kudsia and Helen Maclean - April 2023 - ©SyllaSense Inc.