Are you wondering how to teach rhyming? This post will help you out!
Rhyming is a pre-reading skill that can be taught with two of my favorite things: books and games.
How to teach your child to rhyme
Read nursery rhymes – and read them some more!
They are easy to find and fun to learn. Get them out, and make them a regular part of your child’s infancy, toddlerhood, and preschool years.
a. Make a recording of yourself reading nursery rhymes and play them in the car. I did this before my oldest could talk, and it was a listening favorite for several years.
b. When your child knows her nursery rhymes, have her listen as you recite a familiar rhyme with one mistake. Then have her say “Beep Beep!” or play a rhythm instrument when she hears the wrong word. Let her supply the right one.
c. Invest in some great nursery rhyme books.
d. Read the rhymes, but don’t stop there. Recite them. Sing them. Clap them. Act them out!
Here’s a giant list of nursery rhymes.
This link has rhymes along with singing audio.
Check out these free printable nursery rhyme books to color.
Read rhyming picture books over and over again.
As your child becomes familiar with the books, leave out the rhyming word and pause. Ask her what comes next. You can then identify the rhyming words. “That’s right! Mouse rhymes with house.” Check out my mega-list of rhyming books.
Members get dozens of fun rhyming activities!When you join The Measured Mom Plus, you’ll get instant access to hundreds of printables for teaching early literacy skills … plus a whole lot more!
Play rhyming games.
a. Give clues for the same rhyming family.
Here’s an example from the –at family:
This animal says “meow.” (cat)
This animal sleeps upside down. (bat)
This is something by the door you might step on. (mat)
b. Ask for a particular type of word that rhymes with the word you give. It’s okay to use nonsense words.
What’s an animal that rhymes with wig?
What’s a color that rhymes with mean?
What’s a food that rhymes with maghetti?
c. Make up rhymes and have your child fill in the missing word. Here are some examples:
My old gray cat caught a great big _____.
The big yellow duck was driving the ________.
d. Is it a… You start and let your child finish the rhymes.
You: Is it a shirt?
Child: No, it’s dirt!
You: Is it a pear?
Child: No, it’s hair!
e. Say three words to your child. She gives a thumbs up if the words rhyme. If not, it’s thumbs down.
f. Make a rhyming chain. Name a word. Take turns naming a word that rhymes. When you run out of words or an incorrect word is given, the chain is broken. Start a new chain.
26 Letter Books of Nursery Rhymes & Songs
Print a little book for every letter of the alphabet! Each book contains six nursery rhymes or songs. The books come in both color and black and white.
Thank you for all of your lovely resources! I get excited when I see you in my inbox!
My children really love them!
You’re very welcome, Lisa!
Thanks so much for all the free resources. Only the Lord God will bless you. Just wanted to say thanks a lot,
You’re welcome, Esther! Thank you for your kind words!
Thanks anna for useful material.
You’re very welcome, Nadia!
Great ideas to making rhyme become familiar and easy for kids (and adults)! Thanks!
You’re very welcome, Judy!
As a writer of rhyme, I love this article. Or, as Mem Fox says, “Rhymers will be readers.”
That’s agreat quote from Mem Fox! So true, too!
Can’t wait to use these ideas with my 3-year-old! Thanks!
You’re welcome, Laura!
I love your compilation of ideas. My oldest son, who is 11 and has an intellectual disability, is still challenged to identify and create rhyming words, so we work on it often. For my use I rewrote your list of rhyming games in a different order to level them by difficulty: b, f, c, e, d, and a.
Thank you, Jodie! I appreciate your opinion on which games are harder. I re-ordered them in my post the way you suggested.
I love reading about all of your ideas. Above, the answer should be “mat” but “bat” is listed again.
Thank you, Karen – I love when my readers proofread for me; it means they’re reading closely. 🙂 I fixed it.