Contact Dr. Cupp
Online Newsletter
Newsletter Archive
Classroom Sets
Price List
Order Form
Before Readiness
Sample Lesson Plans
GA Correlations
Research Results
Company Background
Resource Links
Tribute to a Veteran

February/March Newsletter
By Dr. Cindy Cupp

Dear Educators,

 Welcome to the February/March 2003 Dr. Cupp Readers® Newsletter!! 

 Be sure and see our new Hop’n Pop Cheer Cards on the web page.  Teachers are reporting great success with these Hop’n Pop cards.  We have also just added AlphaMotion® Desk Strips.

Please let everyone know that Dr. Cupp Readers® and Ten Minute Phonics™ are both on the State of Georgia Approved Textbook List.  The Georgia State Board of Education unanimously approved both programs at the September 2002 Board meeting.  

 If you would like to review our research, please see the section of this web page under Results.

 We are now updating research on our programs.  An independent reading consultant, Cathy Puett Miller is conducting this evaluation.  Please take a moment and complete the attached survey.  Just click, complete, and email your survey to us.

 Educators have permission to make one copy of this newsletter for classroom use. If you would like to make more than one copy, please email me at cindycupp@mindspring.com 

 Wishing you great success,

Cindy Cupp

This month our Newsletter includes:

Section 1
Three Teaching Tips and Games

Section 2
Feature School of the Month
Dames Ferry Elementary, Gray, Georgia

Section 1

#1 Teaching Tips and Games

Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop

 Objective – To help students’ transition from reading words on cards or on lists to reading words in text.

 Why will this game help some students?  If students have been practicing sight words using index cards or word lists, some students have trouble reading the same words if the words are placed side-by-side on a page of reading text.  Students are not accustomed to seeing the sight word with other words coming before or after.  In order to help students make this transition, Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop has been helpful for some students.

Material needed:

Timer and Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop practice sheet.

Steps to make this game:

1.     Select the sight words students will practice.

2.     Make a Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop practice sheet (see below).  Line one has four spaces between each word; line two has three spaces between each word; line three has two spaces; and lines four and five have one space.

3.     Each student has a copy of the Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop practice sheet.  One child is selected to read the lines.  The teacher sets the timer for 30 seconds and the selected student tries to beat the 30 seconds.  If the student can read all words in 30 seconds, the student catches Hop’n Pop.  Each child in the group will have a turn.

Side-by-Side™ Hop’n Pop 


1.   my    cat    can    see    you    Can 


2.   you   cat   my   see   can   Can   You


3.   can  you  cat  You  see  my  Can 


4.   Can you see my cat?   


5.   You can see my cat.


Student’s name_______________________

Directions:  Set the timer for 30 seconds.  Students try to read all the words in 30 seconds.  There are 30 words. Enter the number of words read within 30 seconds.  Begin in box one and write the score for the first attempt at reading all 30 words.  Continue to enter the score in boxes 2-10 or until they can read all 30 words in 30 seconds.













#2  Teaching Tips and Games

Sound blending

 Are your students having trouble sound blending?  If so, try the strategies described below.

Note to teachers from Dr. Cupp:

 If you want 100% of your student to learn how to sound-blend, use onset and rime.  Period.  Students should practice blending the short a sound with consonants.  Students should automatically be able to read the following:  

ab, ac, ad, af, ag, am, an, ap, as, at, av, az.

 As students learn to read each of the rimes listed above, then begin making new words.  For example:  If the word is tap, students must make the /t/ sound first, and then the rime /ap/.  The /ap/ must be pronounced smoothly with no pause between the /a/ and /p/.

 Common errors:

1.  Problem – For example:  Student sounds out /t/ /ap/ and then says another word like cap or map.  Students may also just guess any word.

Solution – Place pictures of the word the student will sound out on the table.  For example:  Place a picture of a cat, rat, and bat on the table.  Ask students to name the pictures after you.  When you are sure students know the names for the pictures, then show them the word cat.  Point to the word cat and tell students to sound out the word cat.  After the word is sounded out, the student should point to the picture of the cat.  Continue with students sounding out words and matching the word with a picture or an object on the table. 

Problem – Student sounds out /t/ /ap/ and then says pat.  The student flips the last letter to the front of the word.

Solution – Sit beside the student and take the student’s left hand in your hand.  Have the student point to the word with his or her index finger of the left hand.  As the student sounds out the letters in the word tap, the student moves his or her index finger under the letters.  As soon as the letters are sounded, the student moves his or her index finger back to the front of the word and “hits” the first letter of the word with the index finger.  This “hitting” of the first letter causes the student to focus back on the beginning sound.  It works.

 #3   Teaching Tips and Games

Free Comprehension Games to
use with very beginning readers

Sunday Cartoons

Teacher notes from Dr. Cupp:

The January/February/March 2003 edition of Reading Research Quarterly (Volume 38, Number 1) has a great research study on using wordless books to help beginning readers develop comprehension strategies and oral language.  The title of this research article is “Assessing Narrative Comprehension in Young Children.” 

 Problem:   In order to implement many of the strategies mentioned in this article, the teacher needs wordless books.  I have found it  both expensive and difficult to find a large selection of books without words. 

 Solution:  The cartoon section in most Sunday papers is in color.  Ask your friends and family to save the Sunday cartoon section for you each week.  If your largest reading group has eight students, you will need eight copies of the cartoons each week.

 In the cartoon section of last week’s Atlanta Journal and Constitution, I found three cartoons I considered appropriate to use with five-and six-year- olds to develop oral language and comprehension strategies.  The cartoon should show a story line that the young child can follow.  One cartoon had a few words.   I used white out and eliminated the words.

Steps for preparing the cartoons:

1.      Read the cartoons and decide the ones appropriate for your students.  Cut out the cartoons you have selected, glue the cartoon on cardstock and place a number in the box of each picture segment of the cartoon. For example:  If the cartoon is divided into six segments, then number each segment beginning with one in the first box and ending with the number six in the last box.  By placing a number in each box of each cartoon, you can discuss with the student what is happening in that particular box. 

2.      Laminate your cartoons for the week and place them in an 8x10 mailing envelope with one copy of the cartoon pasted on the outside of the envelope.  Place a number on your new Cartoon Comprehension Activity.

Steps to use during instruction:

1.      Give each student in the group a copy of the cartoon.

2.      Have students look at each picture from the beginning of the cartoon to the end.

3.      Tell students there are many possible stories that describe the cartoon.  Students need to know there is not one right answer.

4.      Each student takes a turn telling what he or she thinks is happening in the picture.

5.      Variation  – The teacher may have students cut the cartoons in segments and put the cartoon back together back again.

Section 2

Feature School of the Month

Dames Ferry, Jones County, Gray, Georgia

Dames Ferry is located halfway between Macon and Milledgeville.

 Dames Ferry began using Dr. Cupp Readers® in August of 2002.  All kindergarten, first grade, EIP, and Special Education students are now Jack and Jilly stars.  If you would like to visit Dames Ferry, please contact Lucinda Simpson at: simpson_kyellow@yahoo.com

Dianna Blizzard
Principal of Dames Ferry writes:

We have all been so pleased with the progress our children have demonstrated this year.  Our projected retention rates in Kindergarten have been cut in half at the mid point of this year.  As an administrator, I was able to see first hand the gain that the kindergarten students have made because I gave the LEXIA test to each student. I was impressed with the confidence of the students - they were ready to attack any word that was thrown at them.  One child told me (when confronted with a VERY long word) to hold on a minute and she would get it and sure enough SHE DID!  Comprehension was also up for the Kindergarten students. Thank you Dr. Cupp for providing us the opportunity to display the successes of our students and faculty!

Lucinda Simpson
Kindergarten Teacher and Parent of a Kindergarten Student in Jack and Jilly!:

For the first time, in my 12 years as a Kindergarten teacher, I feel that I am finally teaching for each individual child.  In the past, we have been locked into phonics programs that did not allow for individual differences. We plowed ahead and hoped that everyone would get it!  We over taught phonics - I was frustrated and did not know what to do. I was sending students up to 1st grade that I KNEW were not ready BUT I did not know what to do! I had students who could sound out m--a--p all day long but NEVER make the connection to bring it together and they certainly could NOT read sentences!  1st grade teachers were frustrated also, because although we sent children up knowing letters and sounds they were not making that jump to become readers. Then a wonderful gift was put right at our fingertips!!! Dr. Cupp's Program!  It has truly been like a fabulous gift that we opened up and let our children in with. 

 The key to reading has been found! THIS IS IT! For the first time every student in my class and our other 6 classes are READING and comprehending what they are reading!! Dr. Cupp's program has finally given us what we need to teach 100% of our children! I am able to break my children into groups and teach to the needs of each child! We move at the pace that the child is ready for. I do not see tears of frustration anymore - I see smiling, excited children begging to get started on groups in the morning!! If our morning routine gets off, the children start asking when are we doing groups, when are we doing Hop ‘n Pop!! NEVER has this happened before! When I pulled out the phonics program that we taught - I heard moans and groans!! I was ready to cry from boredom and frustration, too!!!!  I feel like am finally teaching!!!! It is wonderful!! The children want to play the games and they don't even realize how many skills they are learning!!!

 Further proof can be seen in our LEXIA scores - overall the whole kindergarten scored on the average in the 17-22 range - This is amazing for this point in the year.  On another note, we as teachers did NOT test our own children. Our administrators did this for us so no teacher biases can be factored in at all!

 In my room, I had five students who scored 1,2, and 3's coming into my room and their scores now are 17's and 18's! Do you realize how wonderful this is?!  If we had been teaching the "old" way, their scores would have been stuck at 10-12 (maybe! - if that much) This group is already in book 6 of Dr. Cupp Readers®! 

 Further proof of the success can be seen in our GKAP results.  

I actually gave the blending-sounds-to-read-words and the sight-word sections to my class before the Christmas Holidays and 100% of the class passed BOTH sections! This has NEVER happened - Usually we are struggling to pull these sections out in April! I have in the past sent up MANY students who did not pass either section! NOT ANY MORE! 

As a parent, I am thrilled to see my own child’s success! She LOVES reading and LOVES Jack and Jilly! She begs every night to Hop ‘n Pop and read!

 We welcome anyone to come visit our school and see the wonders of Dr. Cupp's Program! It is truly a joy to teach and we would love to share it with everyone!  We will not quit until 100% of our students are able to read and you shouldn't either! The answer to illiteracy is here - Dr. Cupps' Program!!!

Please feel free to contact me at simpson_kyellow@yahoo.com

Debbie Cox
Parent of a Jack and Jilly kindergarten student writes:

My daughter has had a wonderful kindergarten year.  I was a little worried before kindergarten because I did not feel she was interested in reading.  Since she began Dr. Cupp Readers®, I have been amazed at her progress.  She loves to read!!  Her sight word recognition is outstanding!!  As a former first grade teacher, I know how prepared she will be for 1st grade.  Dr. Cupp Readers® have played a large part in my daughter’s success in reading!

Linda Elkins
Kindergarten teacher writes:

“Hats off to Dr. Cupp!”

Our class this year has gained major success in reading.  Their enthusiasm and confidence with phonemic awareness, spelling, decoding and sight word recognition has been fantastic.  The children love to play the games, especially the Cheer Cards.  Students don’t even realize they are learning important skills.  When I announce we will play Hop’n Pop they scream!  They feel as though Jack , Jilly, Miss Sound-O, and Dr. Detective are members of the class.

 We are in Book 18 now and they are discovering that they can read books from the library BY THEMSELVES.  They are pleased and so am I!



February 2003 Research for Dr. Cupp Readers® Ten Minute Phonics TM 

If you have the capability to scan the completed survey into a Word Document, you may also forward it by e-mail to cathypmiller@starband.net

Return this survey by Fax to 770-345-2292, or by mail to:
CANTON, GA             30114

Thank you!

© 2003 Cupp Publishers, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

If you are a teacher using Dr. Cupp Readers® and you would like to have your suggestions or ideas posted in the Monthly Newsletter, please send them to Cindy Cupp at cindycupp@mindspring.com

Webmaster: Picture Perfect Productions.


Copyright 2002, Cupp Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.