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The four roles of a


Beginning readers learn to attend to the alphabetic code, the meaning, how to
use texts, and the intention of the text. In fact they take on four roles: meaning
maker, code breaker, text user and text critic (Freebody & Luke 1990).
Emergent readers need to understand and experience using all four roles in
meaning maker code breaker
order to develop into fluent and flexible readers. However, not all roles will be
text user text critic a focus in each guided reading session. Although teachers often focus on the
role of text user when exploring how to read factual texts with children, some
books will prompt a focus on text critic, meaning making or code breaking.

Meaning maker – text level skills

Meaning makers read to understand. They search for meaning in the
illustrations, the sentence structure and the print. Teachers can enhance
children’s understanding of a text by asking questions that connect their
prior experiences with the book, and by posing comprehension questions to
explore their literal, inferential and critical thinking. For example in the book
I Can’t Find My Roller Skates the following discussion may extend meaning:
• Connecting conversation: People can wear different things on their feet to
skate along the ground.What can they wear?
• Literal comprehension question: Were the roller skates under the bed?
• Inferential comprehension question: Who had the roller skates all along?
• Critical questions: Was it fair that the girl’s sister took the roller skates?
Before children start a new book, teachers can build bridges and make
connections between children’s experiences and the text by using a range of
teaching techniques, for example:
• building up a list of words on a topic
• listing questions about the text
• making semantic webs or mind maps
• drawing diagrams
• reading a related poem or story
• sharing an experience
• general conversations about the topic
These can be asked during and after reading to extend the level of literal,
inferential and critical thinking about the meaning of a text.
Literal comprehension questions concern information that is explicit in the
words and illustrations. In the book What’s That Noise? literal questions
would be: Where was the police car? Who was snoring?
Inferential comprehension is reading between the lines or finding clues in
the illustrations. The meaning is implicit and not obvious. In the book
What’s That Noise? inferential questions would be: Did Nick want to go to
sleep? Did Dad want to wake up the baby?
Critical thinking about the book asks the reader to explore the truth and or
accuracy of the text: Was Nick really asleep at the end of the book? Do you think
all these sounds could be heard at bedtime? Could this be true? Is it believable

Code breaker – word and sentence level skills

Code breakers use what they know about sound–letter relationships and
high-frequency sight words to decode print. Code breaking involves an
understanding of the alphabetic principle, as well as an understanding of
how grammatical structure influences the meaning of a text and how a text
is read. Code breaking improves when children have a useful store of high-
frequency words, and experience with the grammar of written sentences.
(See pages 105–9 for a summary of code-breaking features for each book.)
The alphabetic principle is the connection between the 26 letters of the breaking features of
alphabet, and the approximately 44 sounds or phonemes of the English range of AlphaKids
language. To understand the code and be able to map or link the sounds to books Levels 1-11
letters, readers require some phonemic awareness, or awareness of sound,
as well as an awareness of word families using onset and rime, for example
d-og, l-og, fr-og. Readers also require letter knowledge – the name and
sounds that the letter can represent.
Phonemic awareness is the conscious knowledge of spoken words and
sounds, or phonemes, in language. Hearing and using these sounds
develops from childhood right through to adulthood. For beginning
readers, phonemic awareness concerns listening for words, syllables, rhyme,
alliteration and phonemes. More advanced phonemic awareness could
involve selecting the right word to create a mood or image in a song,
advertisement or political speech.
Beginning readers must have a certain level of phonemic awareness to learn
to read. Learning to read, in turn, heightens the awareness of sounds and
print knowledge. The more children read and write, the more their
knowledge of letters and sounds develops.
Phonemic awareness has a strong relationship to future reading
development. (For more information on phonemic awareness, see the
Alphakids: Alphabet Books Teacher Resource Book.)
Letter knowledge helps to develop children’s understanding of the alphabetic
principle. Many children actually understand the alphabetic principle before
they have mastered all the letters or have been taught letter–sound
correspondences. Knowing the letter names helps children to remember
their sounds, as letter names help children induce the sounds. For example,
when using temporary spelling children use letter names to spontaneously
produce words such as KAT (cat), PPL (people), or JRIV (drive).
Knowledge of the alphabetic principle extends children’s early reading and
writing achievement.They learn to hear and write more complex consonant
and vowel sounds, and as they learn to read they map sounds to letters and
letter clusters.
This involves children using words they know to get to new or unfamiliar
words. When a child uses the known word fat to make a link to an unknown
word brat, they are using analogy or ‘whole-to-parts’ phonics to identify
new words. If, for example a child can read me, then by comparing and
contrasting word parts, the word she can be read. If a child can read do and
unhappy the word undo can be read.
In whole-to-part phonics, children learn about word families made up of
Word Onset Rime
onsets and rimes. The rime consists of the vowel and any consonant sounds
I – I
that come after it. The onset, if it is there, consists of any consonant sounds
itch – itch
that precede the vowel.
sit s- -it
spit sp- -it Whole-to parts phonics occurs after the children have read a whole text. In
splint spl- -int this way, children meet words in context. The teacher, with the children,
pie p- -ie selects particular words in the story to explore and then writes each word
spy sp- -y on separate piece of card, or on the board, highlighting letters representing
an onset (eg sm-) or a rime (eg -iles). The teacher tells the children ‘these
letters say /sm/’ or ‘these letters say /ilz/’ and the words are then placed on
the classroom word wall.
As more and more words are placed on the word wall, the teacher and
children can group words with similar onsets and rimes. For example the
words from texts read with a dr- onset such as drink, drip and drum can be
grouped together. The ‘dr’ consonant cluster could be highlighted with a
pen to make recognition easier. At other time the words may be organised
in word families or rimes with all the -at, -op or -in words grouped together.

dr at op in
drip hat top thin
dress mat pop tin
drum fat hop fin

Onset and rime is important because children use the concept to make
analogies in both reading and writing. (For more information on the
teaching points in each book, see pages 105–9.)
See below for
features of range
of AlphaKids
Levels 1-11 books
Text user – text level skills
The form of a text affects how it is read. If the book is factual, then reading
for information is a focus. If the text is fiction, then the child reads to
understand the plot and characters. Information about how the book can be
used is also provided in the page layout, illustrations, title and the topic. As
text users, children decide on the form or genre of the text and how they
will read it.
Teachers can prepare children to read different text types by talking about
the form of the book and how it is organised. Is the book fiction or factual?
How will I read this book? What do the illustrations tell me?

Text critic – text level skills

As text critics, readers do more than read for truth and accuracy. Beginning
readers can act as text critics by exploring what the text does to them – by
learning to read like a writer.
As text critics, they explore the way texts are constructed – as a book,
cartoon, poster, video or advertisement – and the way this can affect the
message. They explore the author’s intention, and discuss decisions about
the format of the book.The text critic checks for social and cultural fairness,
and looks for any misleading effects of missing information. Questions that
prompt children to read as text critics include:
What message does the author want to tell you?
What did the author have to know to write this book?
Why did the author choose to write about this topic?
Level 1

Title Fruit salad Ice-cream Can You See Me? Glasses Dogs Playing
Vocabulary High-frequency I, like here, is, my, an, acan, you, see, me, my, has this, is, a, big, little, I, like, to, my, of, all
words my my
Word awareness Word families: like Hyphens: ice-cream Word families: can Singular/plural: Word families: Word families: run
– bike, hike – ban, Dan, fan, glasses dog – bog, fog, jog, – bun, fun, gun, run,
man, pan, ran, tan, Word families. log; this/is sun; hide _ glide,
van Dad – bad glad, Opposites: slide, side, tide,
my – by, cry, dry, had, mad, sad big/small, wide; all – ball, call,
fly, my, try black/white, fall, hall, tall, wall
Sounds and letters Hearing words Children clap when Syllables in words:

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

they hear a clap for each beat
specified word or
to indicate the
number of words
in a sentence.
Hearing sounds /p/: pears, peaches long /i/: ice-cream, /t/: teeth, tongue /s/: glasses, sister, /d/: dog /l/: like, play, slide

white long /e/: see, me has

Writing Punctuation Upper case letters Upper case letters Question marks, Upper case letters Upper case letters Upper case letters,
Conventions and full stops and full stops upper case letters and full stops and full stops full stops,
to begin sentence exclamation marks
Grammar Use of a and an Singular and Placement of Verbs (action
plural: teeth/tooth, adjectives before words): run, hide,
ear/ears. Using me noun: big dog jump, slide, swing,
and my crawl.
Use of to before
verb: I like …
(noun) – I like to
… (verb)

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Level 2

Title My Baby Sister Grandpa’s House I’m Brave Living and Non- What’s This? Sandwiches
living Things What’s That?
Vocabulary High-frequency this, is, my, can, has, a, with, big I’m, I, can, a, the, are, things what’s, this, that, a, I, have, a, for, my,
words with, me, my, on, in on, dad
Word awareness Word families: can Word families: big Contractions: Plural nouns: Word families: cat Day words:
– man, ran, Dan, – dig, fig, jig, pig, I’m / I am animals, rocks, – bat, fat, hat, mat, Monday,Tuesday,
fan, plan, ban wig; hall – all, ball, Word families: trees, fires, birds, pat, rat, sat; Wednesday,
call, fall, tall can – ban, Dan, metals, fish, rivers, frog – bog, cog, Thursday, Friday,
fan, man, pan, ran, people, houses dog, fog, hog, jog, Saturday, Sunday,
van Word families: log birthday
thing – bring, sing, Rhyming words: Finding words
wing; fish – wish, cat/mat, frog/log, within words:
dish mouse/house, sand/wich

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

Sounds and letters Hearing words Children raise one Children clap for Children clap for
finger for each each word in a the beats within
word they hear. sentence from the words.

Hearing sounds /s/: sister, sleep, /g/: Grandpa, /c/: can, catch /ing/: things, living /at/ – cat, hat, that, /ch/: cheese,
smile garden, goodnight mat, rat. chicken, sandwich
/h/: house, has
short /a/: grandpa,
Writing Punctuation. Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters Hyphens – non- Upper case letters, Upper case letters
Conventions full stops. full stops. Use of and full stops living, upper case full stops, question to begin sentences,
possessive letters, full stops marks, apostrophes full stops, upper
apostrophe in the case letters for
title. days of the week.
Grammar Me/my Change of Use of a and the Use of are with Contractions:
Beginning structure from before noun. plural noun what’s/what is
questions with can with a very big
garden, to with
very big stairs

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Level 3

Title What’s For Monsters The Party Too Busy The Mailbox Butterfly
Vocabulary High-frequency the, for, asked I, have, big, to see, I’m, a, with, of, and can, we, go, and, the, I, have, from, then, there, was, a,
words a, am, get, you play, not, now, I’m, said, Mum, is, it, a on, the
too no, it’s, not, an, for
Word awareness Word families: cat Word families: big Seeing words Word families: play Word families: not Seeing words
– bat, fat, flat, mat, – dig, pig, wig; see within words: – clay, day, hay, – cot, dot, got, hot, within words:
pat, rat, sat, that – bee, fee, knee; balloon – ball, all; lay, may, pay, ray, lot, rot; bill – ill, dill, butterfly – but,
get – bet, let, met, hats – at; party – say, way; now – kill, fill, mill, pill, sill, butter, fly
net, pet, set, vet, part, art; candles – bow, cow, how, will; an – ban, can,
yet can row, sow, flower Dan, fan, man, pan,
Word families: hat shower plan; it – bit, fit, hit,

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

– bat, sat, fat, mat, lit, nit, pit, sit, wit
flat, cat, rat, that,
pat; cake – make,
take, lake, rake,
Sounds and letters Hearing words Children clap for Children clap for Children put out a Children clap to Children raise a

(phonemic each syllable in every syllable they counter for every indicate the beat finger for every
awareness) words. hear in a sentence syllable they hear (syllables in mail word they hear on
from the text. in a sentence. words). each page as the
text is read aloud.
Hearing sounds Medial sound: /a/: Medial sound: /i/: /p/: party, prizes, /b/:basketball, busy /i/: it, invitation /b/: butterfly
bat, cat, rabbit big, everything people, presents Medial sound in
/c/: cake, candles busy
Writing Punctuation Full stops, upper Upper case letters, Upper case letters Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters,
Conventions case letters, full stops, to start sentences, question marks, full full stops, speech full stops
question marks exclamation marks full stops, use of stops, apostrophes marks, question
ellipses to indicate and exclamation marks, commas,
sentence is not marks direct speech
a/an: a bill, an
Grammar ed suffix – asked Contractions: I’m– Singular/ plural Words related to invitation
I am (adding ‘s’): questions: can Contraction: it’s
Compound words: balloon/s, hat/s, Contractions: I’m /
everything candle/s, game/s, I am
prize/s, present/s
Contractions: I’m /

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I am
Visual literacy Reading flow
chart. Labels, title
Level 4

Title Birthday Cakes Tickling Rain Twins What’s That Noise Making Butter
Vocabulary High-frequency had, on, her, his, he, a, on, the, that’s, it, on, I, put, my, my, and, I are, we, what’s, that, that’s, we, at, a, of, some,
words she, with, them, we, not, said, and, her and, went, came, look, the, have, a, on, the, said, with, put, in, the,
said go same, at, our, do, down, in, up, me, looked, there, but,
like, eat, she off, asked was, no, and, into,
all, it
Word awareness Word families: Word families: dad Word families: wet Word families: Onomatopoeia: Word families:
cake – make, lake, – bad, had, lad, – get, bet, set, met, same – blame, brmm, wah, click shook – book,
shake, take, bake, mad, sad; not – net, let, pet, jet; came, dame, flame, woof, meow, cook, hook, look,
rake; had – Dad, cot, dot, got, hot, went – bent, cent, game, name, tame Word families: nook, took; jar:
sad, bad, lad, mad: jot, lot, pot, rot dent, sent, tent; and that– bat, cat, fat, bar, car, far, mar,
blow – grow, flow, – band, hand, land, hat, mat, rat, sat; par, tar,
row, know, sow, sand; car – bar, far, jar,
tow it – bit, fit, hit, lit, par, star
pit, quit, sit, wit

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

Sounds and letters Hearing words Children clap for
(phonemic each word in a
awareness) sentence.
Hearing sounds /bl/: blew, blow. /f/: foot, funny, /e/: went, wet, /s/: sister, same, /at/ in what and /ed/: tipped, patted,
/b/: birthday, big, feather Wednesday soccer that tasted, looked

/t/:Tina, ten, two,
Writing Punctuation. Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters,
Conventions full stops, speech full stops, speech full stops full stops full stops, question full stops, colons,
marks marks, and commas. marks, speech lists
Upper case letters marks, commas,
for names
Grammar Use of: her/she, Word endings: Contractions: Plurals: twins, eyes, Differences Use of tense in
his/he tickled, tickling didn’t – did not bananas, apples, between words recount:
Contractions: jeans, dresses used for asking needed/need,
that’s – that is and telling: made/make,
asked/said. shook/shake

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Level 5

Title I Can’t Find My Making Lunch Looking for Fang Tadpoles and Frogs Going Shopping Plants
Roller Skates
Vocabulary High-frequency I, can’t, my, lost, in, I’m, said, you, me, said, I’m, for, what’s, the, on, from, and, I’m, going, at the all, and, from, get,
words the, but, they, there, too, will, not, can, he, has, have, you, in, is, a what, will, I, no the, a, is, its, it,
on, for, up, in and, were, make, to, him, and, a, here, is There, are, of, they
Word awareness Word families: Word families: not – Word families: look Word families: and Alliteration: books, Word families: all –
skate – ate, date, hot, cot, rot, dot, – book, took, nook, – band, hand, land, buttons, babies, ball, call, fall, hall,
fate, gate, hate, late, plot, got, pot, spot shook, cook, hook; sand beans, boots, bats … mall, tall, wall; and –
rate; think – blink, Homophones: too, big – dig, fig, pig, band, hand, land,
ink, link, pink, rink, to, two wig sand
sink, wink; but – cut,
gut, hut, jut, nut, put
Positional words: in,
on, up, under, behind

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

Sounds and letters Hearing words Children clap for Children place
(phonemic each word in a counters for each
awareness) sentence. syllable.
Hearing sounds /oo/: looked, book /oo/: who, too, you /h/: here, has, have, /fr/: from, frog /b/: bakery, beans,
help, hair, he, him buttons, babies,
books, buy; /p/: pet,
pencils, parrots, pigs;

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/f/: forks, figs; /fl/:
florist, flags, flowers;
/h/: hardware, hippos,
horses, houses, hats,
hammers; /t/:

5 © EC Licensing
toyshop, tents,
tigers, toys; /tr/: trees,

trains; /s/:

Pty Ltd
sausages, soap;
shopping; /ing/:
shopping, going,
Writing Punctuation. Full stops, upper Speech marks, Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters, Upper case letters
Conventions case letters, commas, question full stops, speech full stops, possessive full stops, question and full stops.
exclamation marks, marks, upper case marks, question apostrophe – marks, exclamation
commas, letters for names marks, commas, tadpole’s marks, dashes
apostrophes and start of apostrophes
sentences, full stops.
Grammar/text Contractions: can’t / Contraction: I’m / I Contractions: we’re, Possessive form: Reading labelled

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types cannot; weren’t / am I’m, what’s, I’ll tadpole’s diagrams
were not; haven’t / Building words: Reading flow
have not look, looking charts.
Question starters:
What’s … Have …
Summary of code-breaking features: Level 6

Title Where’s the Baby Taking Photos The Lost Mother Sleeping Animals The Tree Springs
Vocabulary High-frequency where, the, she, in, my, is, I, have, a, of, the, and, I, went, we, this, is, a, it, can, in, the, here, is, a, this, this, is a, has, what,
words said, are, no, not, my, with, was, in, got, some, no, was, down, its, on, up, all, for, on, are, and does it, do, to, go,
dad, mum, go, to the, went, up, and, my, she, was, with, they up, down, they
his, that, will, be, me, where, did, go,
good, said, her, on, was, to, looked, for,
this, here, are said
Word awareness Word families: pot Word families: click Word families: got Word families: sleep Word families: tree Word families:
— cot, dot, got, hot, — brick, flick, lick, — cot, dot, hot, jot, — beep, creep, — see, bee, knee, spring(ing) — bring,
jot, lot, not, rot, tot; Mick, pick, quick, lot, not, pot, rot, deep, peep, steep, free, three; sap — cling, fling, ring, sing,
sand — and, band, sick, stick, tick, thick, spot, shot, trot; back sheep, weep; down cap, gag, lap, map, sting, string, thing,
hand, land trick; will — bill, dill, — lack, knack, pack, — clown, frown, rap, tap, trap, strap, wing
gill, fill, hill, Jill, mill, rack, sack, stack, gown; shark — wrap, clap
pill, quill, sill, still, till; tack, track; went — bark, dark, hark,
took —brook, cook, bent, rent, sent, tent, lark, mark, park
book, hook, look, vent

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

nook, rook, shook
Sounds and letters Hearing words Children clap for Children put out Children can listen Children clap each Children listen to a Children listen to a
each syllable they counters for each to sentences from time they hear a sentence from the range of words and
hear in a sentence. word heard in a the book read word with two syl- book and count the to put a counter
sentence. aloud and count lables. number of words out for each word
how many words they hear. that has the /ing/

they hear. sound.
Hearing sounds Children hold up a Children listen for Children listen to /a/: ant, sap, an,
finger each time words that start identify words that caterpillar
they hear a word with a given sound have a /sl/ sound at
that starts with the in a range of sen- the beginning.
/f/ sound: photo, tences from the
phone. book, eg listen for
Discuss the use of the word that starts
ph to represent the with /b/.
sound. Compare to
other words with
this sound.
Writing conventions Punctuation Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
stops, question stops, quotation stops, commas, stops stops stops, question
marks, quotation marks, exclamation ellipses, question marks
marks, commas, marks. marks, quotation
exclamation marks Use of capitalisa- marks, exclamation
tion of ‘CLICK’ to marks.
indicate noise made Use of commas and
by camera. ‘and’ in lists
Grammar Contractions: Use of past tense: Conventions of food

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where’s, she’s, she’ll got, went, back to, web diagram —
looked labels, arrows to
show is eaten by
Summary of code-breaking features: Level 7

Title Snake’s Dinner Video Game Too Many Animals Shadow Puppets Who is the Tallest? Washing our Dog
Vocabulary High-frequency for, the, I, you, no, what, got, a, I, play, in, come, the, by, this, is, a, its, can, is, the, a, on, of, to, our, is, a, big, has,
words me, said, so, where, it all, the, at, before, two, and, a, from, with, and, has, two, and, our, back, now, long, and, like, to,
is, them, by, out, after, up, over, to, go, with, on, no, too these, are we, know, do, you on, the, get, very,
came down, says, that, for, into, we, when, have,
you, now, have, do, of, because, us, but,
one, two, just with, him
Word awareness Word families: a_e Word families: Word families: balls Word families: sticks Word families: wall Word families: dry
— snake, cage, ate game — blame, —ball, call, fall, all, — bricks, clicks, — all, ball, call, fall, — by, cry, fly, my,
came, dame, fame, hall, mall, tall, wall flicks, hicks, licks, hall, mall, tall shy, pry, try; dog —
lame, name, same, nicks, picks, tricks bog, cog, fog, hog,
tame; school — jog, log
fool, cool, pool, tool
Sounds and letters Hearing words Children can clap Children listen for Children count Children hold up a

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

for each syllable in the rhyming words syllables in given finger every time
a sentence. on each page. words. they hear a word
with the /sh/ sound
in it.
Hearing sounds long /a/: snake, short /e/: bed, guess, Children listen for Children look at the Children listen for
cage, ate video, excellent, the parts of word cellophane words with the /sh/

level, yes rhyming words that focusing on the /c/ sound in them and
sound the same. and /ph/ and the to identify if the
sounds represented sound it at the
by these letters in beginning, end or in
this word. the middle of the
Writing conventions Punctuation Question marks, Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
quotation marks stops, exclamation stops, commas in stops stops, question stops, commas,
Usage of punctua- marks, quotation lists, exclamation marks ellipses, exclamation
tion inside quota- marks marks marks
tion marks
Grammar Contractions: can’t, Contractions: Use of rhyming Conventions in dia- Comparative lan- Contractions: it’s
what’s We’ve, it’s, I’m couplets grams: labels, guage: taller, Use of plural when
Possessive apostro- Use of capitalisa- pointers, use of shorter talking about the
phe: bird’s, cat’s, tion of all letters in colour dog: our, we
dog’s, boy’s word for emphasis
Use of What’s, Can Use of ellipses to
and Where to indi- indicate text is
cate questions unfinished
Use of speech bal-
loons to indicate
direct speech

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Summary of code-breaking features: Level 8

Title Animal Skeletons Thomas Had a Show and Tell A Pet for Me Growing Tomatoes The Three Little
Temper Pigs
Vocabulary High-frequency all, these, have, had, a, all, the, was, I, have, for, and, you, a, for, me, says, I, to, you, some, in, the, a, there, were,
words some, their, on, the, he, his, to, play, with, to , what, it, is, in, can, have, don’t, day, and, it, when, of, on, me, come, in,
of, are, all, has, its too, up, they, into, this, a, no, yes, an, know, one, to, get, I, big, a, are as, not, by, my, or,
said, if, you, get, I does, the, long, big, will, little, my, too, your, and, he, down,
do two, would, like, said, little
Word awareness Word families: all Word families: mad Word families: tell Word families: cat Word families: pot Word families: big
— ball, call, fall, hall, — bad, Dad, fad, — bell, dell, fell, hell, — bat, chat, fat, hat, — cot, dot, got, hot, — dig, fig, gig, jig,
stall, tall, wall; its — glad, had, lad, pad, sell, well, yell mat, pat, rat, sat, lot, not, rot pig, wig; in — bin,
bits, fits, hits, kits, sad vat; frog — bog, chin, din, fin, grin,
pits, quits, sits cog, dog, fog, hog, pin, sin, tin, win
jog, log, slog,Trog; Ordinal words: first,
mice — nice, spice, second, third
trice, ice; fish —

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

wish, dish
Sounds and letters Hearing words Compound words: Children listen for Children hold a Children identify Children clap when
inside, outside, gold- words that have finger for every the rhyming words they hear the beat
fish, angelfish, two syllables. word in a sentence. on each page in words.
stingray, butterfly,
stick insect, jumping

spider, daddy lon-
glegs, huntsman
Hearing sounds Children listen for Children clap when Children clap when Rhyming words:
the /sk/ sound at they hear a word they hear a word huff/puff, in/chin
the start of words: with a long /e/ with a short vowel
skeleton. sound: seeds, tree, sound in the middle,
eats eg plant.
Writing conventions Punctuation Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
stops stops, commas, quo- stops, question stops, exclamation stops stops, quotation
tation marks, excla- marks marks marks, commas
mation marks
Grammar Writing conven- Present/past tense: Contractions: don’t, Contractions: I’ll
tions: labels with got/get it’s
pointers on dia- Use of capitalisa-
grams, captions for tion of whole word
photos for emphasis:

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Summary of code-breaking features: Level 9

Title Mr Wolf Tries Again Concrete The Giant Scare and Dare The Fox and the Sebastian
Gingerbread Man Crow
Vocabulary High-frequency I, am, the, big, very, this, is, a, it, to, the, one, old, a, lit- my, said, that, at, the, and, a, of, I was, very, he, a, of,
words have, a, going, to, lit- make, and, with, for, tle, she, put, it in, to, the, of, he, go, there, would, like, to, this, could, do, but, like,
tle, me, come, in, can, into, be, has, saw, said, and, out, get, but, a, is, up, in, she, said, saw, with, to, go, his, would,
not, by, on, our, said, are of, as, he, ran, after, was that, he, up, down, get, up, the, your,
or, your, so, could, her, did, not, you, into, have, some, of, did, good, just,
ran, up, out, down, get, by, man, or, too, your, on, in, was, come, one, day,
my, be run, over, into, they, very, so when, said, play,
did, so with, me, went, now,
Word awareness Word families: bash Word families: sand Word families: man Word families: dark Word families: crow Word families: cry
— crash, dash, gash, — and, band, hand, — ban, can, fan, — bark, hark, lark, — bow, low, mow, — by, dry, fly, my,
mash, rash, sash, land, stand; truck — than, Jan, ran, tan, mark, park, spark; row, sow, tow. As sty, shy, try; play —

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

stash, smash, cash, buck, duck, cluck, than, van; cook — dare — scare, care, opposed to: bow, day, bay, gay, hay,
trash, thrash, ash luck, muck, stuck, book, hook, look, fare, hare, mare, cow, how, now lay, may, pay, ray,
struck; make — crook, shook, took rare, spare, share stay, say, stray, tray,
bake, cake, drake, way, fray
brake, fake, lake,
rake, sake, stake,
take, wake

Sounds and letters Hearing words Children listen for Children compare Children find all
words that rhyme. the words concrete words that have
and cement.What is two syllables.
different about the
sounds at the start?
What letter is used
to represent these
Hearing sounds Children clap each soft /g/: ginger, giant Read sentences /cr/: crow, crop, Children listen for
time they hear a /s/ /j/: jumped aloud from the creek, crown, crum- words that end with
sound in any word. hard /g/: get, ground book asking chil- pet, crisp, crest /ing/: morning, cry-
dren to listen for a ing
particular sound.
For example: Listen
for the sound /ee/.
Writing conventions Punctuation Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
stops, quotation stops, question stops, exclamation stops, commas in stops, quotation stops, ellipses, quo-
marks, commas, marks, commas marks, quotation lists marks, commas, tation marks
exclamation marks marks, commas dashes, question
Grammar Contractions: I’ll Use of commas in Contractions: you’ll, Contractions: I’d, Use of dash Contractions: didn’t

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lists let’s shouldn’t Use of past tense:
was, knew, didn’t
Summary of code-breaking features: Level 10

Title Revenge of the Sarah and Will Great Day Out Worm Song Rainforest Plants Socks Off!
Three Little Pigs
Vocabulary High-frequency we, are, the, little, a and, are, they, had, out, day, a, said, we, little, went, as, they, this, is a, in, some, off, when, I , was, lit-
words to, big, or, your, it, said, be, then, a, are, going, to, the, this, a, can, be, get, of, do, not, very, tle, played, a, with,
one, out, saw, not, is, away, how, will, we, went, on, but, down, because, so, to, just, little, to, they, these, my, we, this, before,
down now, what, your, had, in, for, her, see, then, and, came, by, has, all, the, it went, to, our, and,
you, some, I, from, his, our, she, was, saw, my, me, on, see, on, had, go, am, big,
is, my, in, the, on, go, look going, know, two, now, his, him, play,
to, like, good, play, one, in all, of, were, it get
for, went, can, come,
are, I’m, too
Word awareness Word families: bash Word families: will Word families: rain Word families: song Word families: grow Word families: socks
— ash, crash, dash, — bill, dill, fill, gill, — brain, drain, gain, — gong, long, pong, — bow, crow, low, — blocks, clocks,
gash, mash, rash, hill, ill, Jill, kill, mill, main, pain, stain, wrong; bike — hike, mow, know, row, flocks, locks, knocks,
sash, stash; bang — pill, quill, still, sill, till, train, strain, chain; like, strike, spike; sow, tow; top — rocks, shocks, stocks
clang, fang, gang, trill day — bay, clay, sang — clang, fang, hop, mop, pop, plop,

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

hang, rang, sang Fay, gay, hay, lay, gang, hang, rang stop, shop, crop,
may, pay, ray, say, chop; all — ball, call,
tray, stay, stray, way fall, hall, tall, wall
Sounds and letters Hearing words Children listen for Children predict the Children listen for
words with two syl- rhyming word for words that have a
lables. every second line. given number of

Hearing sounds Children raise their Children identify Children listen for Children listen for Children listen for Children listen for
hands when they the final sound in: words that start words that begin words that have /l/ the short /o/ sound:
hear words with a friends, always, with /w/: we, went, with the /b/ sound: sound in them: socks, off, of, on
given onset or rime. Will’s, house, lives, wait, when, way because, big bird, plants, lot, sunlight,
class, fax boy, bike little, floor, taller, all
Writing conventions Punctuation Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
stops, quotation stops, exclamation stops, quotation stops, quotation stops stops, exclamation
marks, commas marks, quotation marks, commas, marks, dashes, marks, quotation
Use of ellipses to marks, commas, ellipses, exclamation exclamation marks marks, commas
indicate sentence question marks marks
incomplete Possessive apostro-
Grammar Contractions: I’ll, Compound words: Use of speech bal- Use of ellipses Compound words: Use of past tense
we’ll, it’s always, forever, loons Use of rhyming rainforest, sunlight
Use of capitalisa- together, birthday, couplets
tion for ‘AAGH’ to Letter-writing con- Use of RRRough to
emphasise the tone ventions: use of emphasis
of voice Dear, from, etc. pronunciation
Fax, birthday card, Use of capitalisa-
and postcard for- tion of whole words

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mat to indicate sound
and emphasise
Summary of code-breaking features: Level 11

Title Little Monkey Floating and Sinking Beaks and Feet The Stubborn Goat Roads and Bridges Tarantula
Vocabulary High-frequency I, am, a, there, was, some, what, to, or, there, are, of, they, there, was, a, if, he, and, were, was, a, a, is, the, in, can, it,
words little, with, her, is, this, in, the, it, has, have, and, to get, is, in, the, and, out, of, with, on, it, going, be, have, on, they,
mother, very, can, are, of, their, into, a, this, a, it, its for, would, very, said, the, very, I’m, to, my, and, to, look, like,
see, the, you, will, in, they, go, put good, like, in, long day, one, come, or, said, can, there, in, not, of, it, out, its,
to, some, as, by, get, your, not, went, then, make, over, for, don’t, make, by,
before, come, and, came, ran, were, to, your, his, this, just, some, with
me, came, on, out, so, that, get, have, like, as, he, asked,
could, not, up, but, little, but long, was, but, good
this, all, go, look,
your, for, just
Word awareness Word families: stuck Word families: float Word families: ea Word families: goat Word families: flag Word families: feed
- buck, duck, luck, - boat, coat, goat, — eagle, tear, beak, — boat, coat, float, — bag, nag, rag, — bleed, deed,
muck, cluck, tuck, moat; sink — blink, break, eat gloat; stay — bay, sag, tag, wag, stag; greed, need, reed,

AlphaKids summary of code breaking features

truck, pluck, struck; link, mink, pink, rink, day, gay, hay, lay, blade — fade, seed, weed; bark —
fall — ball, call, hall, slink, stink, think, may, pay, ray, say, made, wade, trade, dark, lark, mark,
tall, wall, stall; jump wink tray, way spade; truck — park, shark, stark
—bump, clump, cluck, duck, luck,
dump, hump, lump, muck, suck, stuck,
pump, rump, stump; struck, truck
eat, beat, heat, meat,
neat, seat, wheat

Sounds and letters Hearing words Children listen for Children clap when Children listen for Children clap for /b/: bridges, building, Children clap for
words that have they hear words words with two each syllable in a bulldozer, broom, each syllable in a
two syllables: mon- with long /o/: float, -syllables. word. blade, brrm word.
key, mother, pan- potato, boat
ther, before, along
Hearing sounds Children listen for Children listen for /st/: stubborn, stand- /ar/: bark, hard,
words with a long words with a long ing, stay parts
/e/ sound: monkey, /e/ sound: eagle, eat, /er/: spider, bigger
eat, reached, quick- feet /all/: tall, crawl,
ly, hurry, beside small
short /a/: man,
hand, can, and,
tarantula, catch,
paralyses, fangs
Writing conventions Punctuation Colons, capital let- Capital letters, full Full stops and capi- Quotation marks, Capital letters, full Capital letters, full
ters, full stops, stops, question tal letters full stops, capital stops, quotation stops, paragraphs
exclamation marks, marks Use of possessive letters, and commas marks, exclamation
question marks apostrophe marks, commas,
Grammar Use of character Present and past Words ending in Contractions: Compound words: Comparative

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name followed by verb forms: ‘ing’ wouldn’t, I’ll bulldozer, wheel- words: biggest, big-
colon to indicate sink/sunk Compound words: chair, sandpit ger
who is speaking outside, hen house,