don't peck, hen!

Don't Peck, Hen!

Don't Peck, Hen!
Target text


Children will recognize, read, and write words with a short-e sound.

See Standards

Lesson Plan

Target Words:

  • Hen
  • Get
  • Fed
  • Pet
  • Peck


  • Picture of hen* or toy hen
  • List of segmented words*
  • Word bank*
  • My Hen Likes to Peck target text*
  • A Red Pet target text*

*Items included below.

State and Model the Objective

Tell the children that they will read and act out a story about a hen which focuses on short-e words, such as hen, peck, neck, and leg.

Literacy Activities

Read and act out the text My Hen Likes to Peck target text

  • Engage the children in shared reading of My Hen Likes to Peck (see below). 
  • Using the picture of the hen (see below) have children act out the text.

Segment sounds in words

  • Let the children use their fingers as a beak to peck at short-e words in My Hen Likes to Peck (see below). 
  • Have the children say the words with a “stretched out” vowel: “heeeen”.
  • Using the list of short-e words below, help the children write sentences about things the hen can do (e.g., go to bed in the pen, peck on the deck, get wet).

Read A Red Pet target text with children 

  • Engage the children in shared reading of A Red Pet (see below) and fade support.
  • Segment short-e words into their sounds (e.g., h-e-n, p-e-ck, w-e-t, g-e-t, p-e-n, l-e-g, n-e-ck, l-e-t, b-e-t, t-e-n) and have the children say the word they hear (e.g., hen). 
  • Using the segmented words below, have the children use their fingers to peck each letter, produce each sound, and blend the sounds to make a word (e.g., h-e-n: hen).
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SEEL Target Texts

My Hen Likes to Peck

I have a pet.
My pet is a hen.
My hen pecks when she wants to get fed.
She pecks at my neck.
She pecks at my leg.
Get away, hen!
Do not peck my neck and leg!
Don’t fret, hen.
You will get fed.
But not yet.
Go peck for bugs by the shed
And you will get fed.


A Red Pet

Short e is in pet—a pet I met—a red pet.
The pet is a red hen.
I fed the red hen.
Then I led the pet, the red hen, into a pen.  
The pet hen is in her pen.
The hen is fed and is all set.
I get in bed. I am all set in bed. 
And my red hen is set in her pen.
I can tell all is well with my pet, the hen.
Short e is in hen and the hen is in her pen.
Read More



SEEL lessons align with Common Core Standards. Please see the standards page for the code(s) associated with this lesson.