A Trail for a Snail


Recognize (e.g. "Do trail and snail rhyme?") and/or produce (e.g. "What rhymes with snail?") words that rhyme with snail. Point to words in a text to demonstrate print awareness.

Lesson Plan

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Target Words:

  • snail
  • trail
  • pail
  • mail


  • Masking tape (to make trail)
  • Pail (or small bucket)
  • Picture cards (to use as mail on the snail trail - see below)
  • A Trail for a Snail target text

State and model the objective
Tell the children that they will pretend to follow a trail for a snail to find words that rhyme with snail.

Practice the skill within an activity

A trail for a snail

  • Make a trail on the ground using masking tape or string and place the picture cards (see below) along the trail.
  • Let a child be a snail to lead the other children along the snail's trail.
  • Explain that there is mail along the trail and that they need to find the mail that rhymes with snail.
  • When the lead child comes to a picture card, have them pick it up and show it to the other children. 
    • If the picture rhymes with snail, have the child put it in the pail
    • If it doesn't rhyme, leave it on the trail.
  • Have the next child in line become the leader and look for mail on the trail to put in the pail.
  • Repeat to give as many children as possible the opportunity to find mail on the snail's trail.
  • Have the children review and list the words they found that rhyme with snail.

Apply the skill

Read a predictable, repetitive text to the children to support print awareness (see text below) 

  • Display the target text A Trail for a Snail large enough for children to easily see.
  • Read the text to the children, pointing to each word in left to right sequence.
  • Read the text again and have the children point to each word in left to right sequence. 
  • Allow the children to shadow read by repeating predictable phrases while you read the text again.
  • Ask the children which words in the text rhyme with snail.

Practice rhyming

  • Produce words that rhyme with snail
    • Remind the children of the words they played with (snail, mail, trail, pail).
    • Tell them you can think of other words that rhyme with snail (whale, tail, rail, hail).  
    • Ask each child to think of a word that rhymes with snail 
    • If a child doesn't respond in a few seconds, give him/her an option:  
      • "How about kale?  Does kale rhyme with snail?" (Nod your head yes to let the child know that they rhyme) 
      • "Do dale and snail rhyme?" (Nod your head yes)
  • Recognize rhyming words 
    • Have the children repeat a set of 2 words (e.g. snail, mail)
    • Ask the children to show you thumbs up if the words rhyme and thumbs down if the words do not rhyme.
    • Repeat with other sets of words: (e.g., hail, stale; trail, pail; tail, dog; sail, quail; dale, corn; fail, rail).
    • If children do not respond correctly, repeat the 2 words, emphasizing the ending sounds of the words.  

SEEL Target Texts

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A Trail for a Snail

Look, a trail. 
It's a trail for a snail.
Come, snail. 
Get your pail!
Let's go on the trail.
On the trail, the snail finds mail.
He finds lots of mail.
He puts the mail in his pail.
The pail gets full of mail.
The pail gets full of mail for the snail.


SEEL At Home

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Recognize (e.g., “Do snail and trail rhyme?”) and/or produce (e.g., “What rhymes with snail?”) words that rhyme with snail. Point to words in a text to demonstrate print awareness.


  • Masking tape or string to mark a snail trail on the ground
  • Picture cards (cut and laid out along the trail) 
  • A Trail for Snail target text (see below)

Activity: A Trail for a Snail

  • Prior to doing this activity with your child, make a snail trail using the picture cards (see below). 
  • With your child, pretend to be a snail and follow the trail, only stepping on pictures of things that rhyme with snail.
  • When you get to the end of the snail trail, read the A Trail for Snail target text to your child, helping your child point to the words as you go along.
  • Reread the text and have your child clap when you say a word that rhymes with snail.  
  • The activity can be repeated several times.



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CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.K.2.A: Recognize and produce rhyming words.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.K.1: Demonstrate understanding of the organization and basic feature of print.