February 20, 2024

Rhyme in Reading-Ready

In our preschool pre-literacy class, Reading-Ready, our little learners are diving into rhyming!  In the picture above, we're saying, seeing, and even touching, one of the entertaining and tactile rhino rhymes ("grumpy" and "bumpy") from our weekly featured book called Rhymoceros.

What is Rhyming?

Rhyming is an early phonological awareness skill that focuses on the matching sounds in words.  If words share the same middle and ending sounds, they rhyme.  For example...

Clap, slap, chap, strap, cap, flap, snap, and map all rhyme.  


Because they all end in “ap!”  

Whether it’s heard in a recited nursery rhyme like Jack and Jill... or sprinkled in a classic Dr. Seuss book... or sung in a silly tune such as "Down by the Bay," rhyming brings delight and captures the interest and attention of children.  Not only is rhyming fun, but it's also a beginning step to building more complex phonological awareness skills essential to reading and writing.

Ways to Practice Rhyming

Here are some ways we build phonological awareness through rhyming instruction in Reading-Ready:

  • Listening to Rhymes
    • Listening to books that contain accurate rhymes while giving emphasis to the rhyming words (The mouse painted his house.)
  • Repeating Rhymes
    • Repeating pairs of rhyming words (e.g., house/mouse, fat/mat)
    • Repeating the ending and middle sounds that are the same in rhyming words (e.g., ouse- for house/mouse, at- for fat/mat)
  • Identifying Rhymes and Discriminating Rhymes from Non-Rhymes
    • Listening to word pairs and determining if they rhyme (e.g., house/mouse- rhyming, fat/pizza- NOT rhyming)
    • Given a group of words, finding the one that does NOT rhyme (e.g., house, firefighter, mouse)
    • Given a word, finding its rhyme among a group of words (e.g., Find the rhyme for fat.  Tractor, window, slide, mat, lemonade.
    • Repeating short sentences and identifying which words rhyme  (e.g., Mouse sat on the house.)
  • Explaining Rhymes
    • Explaining why word pairs rhyme or not (e.g., House and mouse rhyme because they both end with “ouse.”  Fat and pizza do NOT rhyme because their middle and ending sounds, “at” and “izza,” do NOT sound the same.)
  • Creating Rhymes
    • Given a word, producing a word (or made-up word) that rhymes (e.g., Rhymes for fat: cat, splat, sat, flat, mat, bat, dat, gat, hat, lat, zat, chat, knat, etc.)
    • Coming up with two or more words (or made-up words) that rhyme (e.g., mouse, house, bouse, fouse, chouse, etc.)

Continue the Rhyme Time

Hopefully these skills and examples will give you fresh ideas for how to incorporate the amusement of rhyming into your dinner conversations, car ride music selections, or bedtime story routines!

- Johanna Sims, M.S., CCC-SLP

Pulling Out Items from Our Mystery Bag to Find Rhymes

Thumbs Up if Animal Pictures from Our Book Rhyme and Thumbs Down if They Don't Rhyme 

Identifying Rhyming Words in Sentences from Our Story

Using Rhymes to Build a Potato Head Together

More from the Blog