Children love rhyming words from an early age. Even a child who is just learning to speak can recognize and enjoy the sing-song tones of Dr. Seuss books and songs like “Are You Sleeping”. But teaching a child to rhyme can be a different story. It is a skill that simply takes practice…and fun practice is the best kind! We have several things we do to teach rhyming to our children.
One game we play in our home-preschool is this Rhyming Sounds Sorting Game. It’s a pretty basic game for ages 4-8 where children just practice finding words that rhyme using the pictures on the cards. I use it with my three year old and just play it with her and she enjoys it.
We also play basic rhyming games where one child will pick a word and then we all try to find words that rhyme. The fun thing about this game is that even nonsence words can work! As long as they’re getting the rhyming sound right, we count it. When we run out of rhyming words, someone else picks a word. (This game is just one of many activities that can be found in my book, Kindergarten Ready in 30 Days. Be sure to check it out!)
Another really great way to teach rhyming is by simply READING! Get some Dr. Seuss books out and read, read, read. When your child is familiar with the way words fit together and sound when they rhyme, they’ll be able to make their own rhymes even easier. When your child is somewhat familiar with the book, start leaving off words and letting them fill in the blanks. This gives them a chance to rhyme themselves!
Whether you make up your own fun rhyming games, purchase a game like the one we own, or play some of these fun rhyming games on the PBS site, rhyming is an important (and fun) skill for your child to learn!