speech and language teaching concepts for Cool Dog School Dog in speech therapy
Frequent Speech Sounds:

/d/ initial
/g/ final
/t/ initial


back to school

Book Details:
Diverse Characters: Yes
Age Recommendation: Early Childhood, Elementary

Cool Dog, School Dog

By Deborah Heiligman

Join Tinka, a dandy, sandy Golden Retriever, as she unexpectedly visits her owner at school and helps his class learn to read. Bright illustrations rendered in acrylic paint add to the excitement in this playful back-to-school story about a boy and his “loves-to-hear-a-book” dog.

This sweet rhyming back to school book can be used in speech therapy to address social/emotional issues like being away from loved ones. It is also great for noticing character expressions and for targeting character analysis as well as for /d/, /g/, and /t/ sounds! Discover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using Cool Dog, School Dog in speech therapy below:

Key Teaching Concepts

Narrative Structure:

descriptive sequence​

Narrative Concepts:

character analysis​
illustration study​
phonological awareness​ 


order of events and places Tinka goes


joy, sigh, groan, moan, peak, sneak, sprint, streak, plead, nook

Character Analysis:

Tinka and the boy are sad to leave each other when the boy goes to school but when Tinka follows him, Tinka gets lots of love and attention from the children at school.


Tinka learns that it’s important to follow the rules and accept that just because we can’t be with our loved ones all the time, doesn’t mean they don’t love us.

Phonological Awareness:



What kind of life do you think Tinka has?
How does Tinka feel when the boy goes to school?
Why do you think Tinka hates to be alone?
How does Tinka feel about being outside?
How do the different kids feel about Tinka being at school?
What do the different kids and staff think when Tinka runs down the hall, crashes into the wall and messes up the room?
How do Tinka and the boy feel when they get in trouble?
How do they feel about Tinka when Tinka is being a “good dog”?

If you are interested in seeing other back to school books to use in therapy, then check out the Narrative Teaching Points Book List for a printable copy.