Cupcakes - Tip Sheet

An image of the cover for the book "Cupcakes" showing a father taking a selfie with his young daughter showing off a plate of cupcakes


Cupcakes - Teacher Tip Sheet

Purple Series - Book 4 - Cupcakes

Grapheme/Phoneme Correspondence

Tips and Activities to Try

Introduced in This Book

  • consonant digraph <wr>/r/

Previously Introduced


  • all short vowels, <u>/o͝͝o/
  • <o>/ō/, <e>/ē/, <y>/ī/, <ee>/ē/, <ay>/ā/, <ai>/ā/, <y>/ē/, <a-e>/ā/, <i-e>/ī/, <o-e>/ō/, <u-e>/yū/, e>/o̅o̅/


  • all single consonants and clusters
  • <ng>/ng/, <nk>/nk/
  • <s>/s/ and /z/, <c>/s/


  • <th>/TH/ voiced, <th>/th/ unvoiced, <ck>/k/, <ff>/f/, <zz>/z/, <ss>/s/, <ll>/l/, <sh>/sh/, <ch>/ch/, <qu>/kw/, <-tch>/ch/, <-dge>/j/, <wh>/wh/

Additional Concepts

  • <al> (<a> as short /ŏ/ before <l>)
  • <wa> (<a> as short /ŏ/ after <w>)
  • <er>/er/, <or>/or/

Key Concepts to Understand

  • <wr> words are Germanic in origin and imply twisting or distortion

Words for Reading and Writing

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

  • wrap, write, wrench, wrong, wreck, wren, wrote, wring, wrist, wrack, wrath, wrung, wretch
  • add suffixes (e.g.,-s, -ed, -ing, -er) to suggested words where appropriate → be aware of suffixing conventions

Refer to Page 4 in Morphology Background Information Sheets



Tips and Activities to Try

Introduced in This Book

  • suffix <-er> as an “agent” or “one who”

Previously Introduced

  • suffix <-s> third person singular, plural, and possessive
  • suffix <-ing> as present participle
  • suffix <-ed> as past tense of a verb
  • compound words
  • suffix <-y>
  • suffix <-er> as comparative

Key Concepts to Understand

  • suffix <-er> has multiple functions, some are:
    1. as an agent → denotes a person (“one who”) or thing (“something that”) that performs a specified action or activity such as teacher or mixer
    2. comparative (e.g., stronger)
    3. derivational suffix of verbs, indicating repeated or diminutive action (e.g., flicker)

Note: remind students that suffixes come “after bases” and not “at the end of words” as there can be more than one suffix (e.g., play + er + s)

Note: sometimes <er> is just a grapheme and not a suffix (e.g., water)


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.

Noun Phrase

Verb Phrase

Prepositional Phrase

Wren, the catcher

was on the pitch

across from players

the wrong golfer

broke his wrist

after he fell into the bunker

the smaller wren

sat on her wrench

under the dormer

the milder child

wrote with a marker

in her day plan


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

Comprehension Corner - Cupcakes

Vocabulary Development

  • Do you know another kind of whisker?
  • What is another way to say flipped?

Making Connections

  • Have you ever baked? Who do you bake with?


  • Why was the cake mix full of lumps?
  • How do you think Granddad will feel about Jordan’s cupcakes?


  • What were the steps that Jordan took to make the cupcakes?


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