a pail on a trail

A Pail on a Trail

A Pail on a Trail
Target text


Recognize words that rhyme with trail (e.g., "Do pail and trail rhyme?") and produce rhyme words (e.g., "Think of a word that rhymes with trail"). 

See Standards

Lesson Plan

Target Words:

  • pail 
  • tail
  • sale 
  • mail
  • trail
  • whale


  • Pail or paper cup with paper handle attached
  • Paper tails
  • Farmer Dale nametag*
  • Animal picture cards*
  • Word cards* 
  • Farmer Dale's Pail target text*

*Items included below.

State and Model the Objective
Tell the children that they will follow Farmer Dale on his trail with a pail as they recognize and produce words that rhyme with trail, such as pail, mail, tail, sale, and rail.
Literacy Activities 
Farmer Dale and his pail 

  • Read the Farmer Dale's Pail target text (see below) to the children, pointing out the words that rhyme with trail.
  • Give the children paper tails or have the children make some.
  • Let some children stand along a designated “trail.”
  • Put on the Farmer Dale nametag (see below), take the pail, and have the other children line up behind you. 
  • Tell the children that Farmer Dale will walk along a trail and feed animals that have tails. 
  • Let the children pretend to give food from the pail to the animals with tails.
  • Comment on how Dale, pail, trail, and tail rhyme.

Recognize rhyming words 

  • Ask the children if the words tail and pail rhyme and shake your head yes.
  • Tell the children to wag their tails if two words rhyme (e.g., pail, Daletail, sale; trail, snail; whale, cat; mail, bail; hail, mail). Support as needed. 

Produce words that rhyme with pail 

  • Give each child a chance to hold the pail and think of a word that rhymes with pail (e.g., “Think of a word that rhymes with pail . . . how about tail?").
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SEEL Target Texts

Farmer Dale’s Pail

Farmer Dale has animals with tails.
Farmer Dale’s animals with tails stand along a trail.
Farmer Dale has a pail.
Farmer Dale takes his pail along the trail.
Farmer Dale feeds his animals from his pail. 
Farmer Dale goes along the trail to feed his animals—his animals with tails.
Farmer Dale feeds animals that have tails from his pail.
Farmer Dale does not fail to feed animals that have tails.
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SEEL At Home


Recognize and produce words that rhyme with trail

  • Pail or bowl
  • Word cards* 
  • Farmer Dale’s Pail target text*

*Items included below.
Activity: Pail on a Trail 

  • Read the Farmer Dale’s Pail target text (see below) to your child and emphasize words that rhyme with pail.
  • Place -ale/-ail words in a pail then let your child pick a card from the pail.
  • Read the card and let your child make a trail with word cards.
  • As you go along, make comments like:
    • The word tail rhymes with pail. It can go on the trail.
    • This is whale. Whale can go on the trail.
    • This says sale. Sale rhymes with pail and can go on the trail.
    • The trail has mail, sail, tail, pail, fail, whale, stale, and snail.
  • Read the cards again, put them in the pail, and chant “___ (e.g., tail) rhymes with trail,___ (e.g., tail) goes in the pail.”


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