Keys to Teach Rhyming Words Effectively

Phonological awareness is highly related to later success in reading and spelling according to research (Moats and Tolman, 2008). Phonological awareness includes these components:

  • Counting, tapping, blending, or segmenting a word into syllables.
  • Producing a rhyming word.
  • Identifying and matching the initial sounds in words, then the final and middle sounds.
  • Segmenting and producing the initial sound, the final and middle sounds.
  • Blending sounds into words.
  • Segmenting the phonemes in two- or three-sound words, moving to four- and five- sound words as the student becomes proficient.
  • Manipulating phonemes by removing, adding, or substituting sounds.
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One of the avenues to promote phonological awareness is by teaching children how to rhyme and produce words. This can be easily taught by using these effective strategies:

  • Read rhyming picture books and poems to your children. As you read, identify and practice rhymes together.
  • Ask your children to recite learned rhyming words or alliterative phrases.
  • Share nursery rhymes with your children.
  • Play rhyming games.
  • Sing rhyming songs together.

During reading and/or singing activities, ask these questions to your children:

  • Do these words rhyme? How do you know? 
  • Which of these words does not rhyme? How do you know?

Rhyming has two components: Recognizing the rhyme and producing the rhyme. As children learn to rhyme, they may experience misconceptions.  Some of these confusions are listed below:

  1. Children may believe that rhymes are words that begin with the same sound (for example, hat and ham).
  2. They may think that words that have the same beginning and end sounds rhyme even if they do not have the same vowel sound (for example, pan and pin).
  3. Children may believe that they cannot change the first sound of a word to make a new word that rhymes (for example, hug and tug).

If your children need reinforcement to rhyme or if you need more rhyming activities, check out this mini bundle.  It was created in 2016 and completely updated in July 2021. It includes the following:

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With these rhyming activities for K-1, your children will accelerate their learning of identifying and producing rhyming words before you know it!                                                                 

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