Hameray Classroom Literacy Blog!

Double Consonants with Little Rabbit!

Posted by Sally Hosokawa on Oct 6, 2016 3:02:00 PM


Have you read Joy Cowley’s Little Rabbit series yet? Leveled from C-D, this all-new set from the Joy Cowley Early Birds series will bring joy and laughter into your early childhood classroom.

Apart from the charming humor and adorable illustrations, the Little Rabbit series offers a multitude of opportunities for your students to improve literacy skills. The main character’s name, Little Rabbit, already includes two examples of double consonants--"tt" and "bb"! By examining the book Carrots, your students can familiarize themselves with double consonants, an essential phonic skill.


Title page:

  • Examine the title. What do you notice about the spelling of this word? Are there any letters that are repeated in the word?
  • Introduce the term double consonants—when two of the same consonants appear together in succession.

 P. 2:

  • What are the double consonant words on this page? (Rabbit, chopped, carrot.)
  • Three is not a double consonant because “e” is a vowel. This exercise will serve as an effective way to test your students’ confidence in distinguishing consonants from vowels.

P. 5:

  • What is the new double consonant word introduced on this page? (All.)


P. 6:

  • What are the new double consonant words introduced on this page? (Squirrel, will.)

P. 8:

  • Explain that Dad is not a double consonant word. While it contains two “d”s in the word, they are separated by an “a” and thus do not appear right next to each other.

After reading: 

  • List all the different consonants that appear doubled in this book: r, t, b, l, and p. Brainstorm with the class to think of other words that contain these double letter consonants (parrot, tattle, bubble, gorilla, happy).
  • Can other consonants in the alphabet also be doubled? Have your students go on a double consonant hunt through the other books in your classroom library. The Little Rabbit series also includes the double consonan words biggest and off. “S” as in miss, “m” as in summer, “d” as in shudder, and “n” as in runner also appear as double consonants in English.


Double consonants can challenge early spellers, but they are actually very common in our daily language. (For reference, this blog post uses 31 different instances of double consonants!) Gaining familiarity through reading will help your students recognize words that require double consonants. Happy reading with Little Rabbit!


Browse all of the Little Rabbit titles at our website here. Click the image below to download a informational sheet about Joy Cowley Early Birds, which includes the book featured in this article. 

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Topics: Joy Cowley Early Birds, Leveled Readers, Double Consonants, Little Rabbit

Reading to Develop Emotional Literacy: Happy

Posted by Sally Hosokawa on Sep 8, 2016 3:27:00 PM

This is the second post in a series about reading narrative books to develop emotional literacy. For the first post (introduction), click here.


Last week, we discussed how reading fictional narratives can help students develop emotional and literary skills. In the subsequent posts, we will apply this discussion to lessons that you can incorporate into the classroom. This post will focus on feeling "happy," introducing two books that exhibit happy characters and allow you to open up a discussion about feelings.

Smile and Little Rabbit’s Laugh from Joy Cowley Early Birds feature her newest character, Little Rabbit. Leveled at Guided Reading Level C and D, respectively, these two books employ repetitive text that will be accessible to all students at the beginning of the year. With endearing illustrations and uniquely Joy Cowley humor, the Little Rabbit books are sure to bring happiness into your classroom! 


joy-cowley-early-birds-little-rabbits-laugh-book.jpgDiscussion points:

p. 4:

  • Can anyone make a silly face? Have a volunteer stand and make their silliest face. Raise your hand if you laughed!
  • Discuss the illustrations. How does the illustrator show us that Little Rabbit isn’t laughing? This question prompts students to move beyond the text and recognize the illustrator's role in the story.
  • Repeat the same questions above for page 5 with a silly walk.
p. 7:
  • Do you think Little Rabbit is laughing now? How can you tell? (Squinted eyes, an open mouth)
p. 8:
  • Little Rabbit and Little Chick are laughing together. How do you think they are feeling?
  • How else can you make someone laugh?


joy-cowley-early-birds-smile-book.jpgDiscussion Points:

p. 2:

  • How do you think Little Rabbit and Squirrel are feeling? How can you tell? (They are smiling.)
  • Do you think Chickie is happy? Why or why not?
p. 6:
  • What does Chickie do when he is happy?
p. 7:
  • Do you think Chickie is happy now? How can you tell?
p. 8:
  • Why does Little Rabbit say Chickie is “too happy”?
  • Do you think there is a such thing as being “too happy”? Accept several responses.

Writing exercise:

  • What do you do when you are happy? Have students complete the sentence “I ____ when I am happy” and draw an accompanying illustration. Are the people in your illustration smiling or laughing?
Everyone enjoys feeling happy, so discussing this positive emotion will serve as a lively introduction to our emotive exploration. Next week, we will focus on the opposite but equally important emotion, sadness. Subscribe on the right-hand sidebar to receive e-mail updates about new blog posts! 


Click this link to browse all of our products about Feelings and Emotions. Visit our website to learn more about Joy Cowley's newest character, Little Rabbit, and click the image below to download a informational sheet about Joy Cowley Early Birds. 

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Topics: Joy Cowley Early Birds, Leveled Readers, Sally Hosokawa, Emotional Literacy, Little Rabbit

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