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Ideas for Pre-K & Preschool Teachers
Teaching Rhyming in Pre-K
By Karen Cox | Affiliate Disclosure | Filed Under: Phonological Awareness
Here are some fun ways to teach rhyming in Pre-K.
We recite traditional nursery rhymes while doing movements that correspond with them. The movements we use come from Jack Hartmann’s CDs Rhymin’ to the Beat volumes 1 and 2. We learn to recite the rhyme with the movements before doing the song. Reciting nursery rhymes is the best way to begin teaching rhyming to preschoolers. We start the school year with nursery rhymes and continue them all year long. You can get free printable nursery posters here at PreKinders.com.
Objects are placed in a basket (one object for each child present), and the basket is passed around the circle. As each child gets the basket, I say a word (such as “fizzers”) and they pull out the object that rhymes (“scissors”). You can use any objects because it doesn’t matter if the rhyming words are real words or nonsense words.
Erase a Rhyme
Draw a picture on a dry erase board, such as grass, sky, tree, flower, and sun. Say a word, such as tower, and have a child come up to erase what rhymes (flower); erase what rhymes with bee (tree); erase what rhymes with fun (sun). Continue until the whole picture is erased. Draw on a dry erase lap board before the children arrive, so that they don’t have to wait while you draw. Usually, after I’ve drawn a few, some of the children will volunteer to draw one for the next day.
Rhyme Time Pocket Chart
This is just another way to use and display rhyming cards. We use this pocket chart for matching games at circle time, and the children use it during center time. I purchased the set of rhyming cards in the school supply section of a store (I no longer remember where). You could also print the cards from the Rhyming Match Game to use for the pocket chart.
Hook words that rhyme together on a metal ring. Include a picture with the word. Children flip through the picture cards and say them into a PVC phone. Example: bag, tag, rag, wag. You can make these using clipart, or save time and purchase Rhyming Rings at Teachers Pay Teachers .
Download this free set of Rhyming Bingo mats. There are 8 mats included so that you can use them with a small group of children. You do not have to use all 8 mats, so you can work with smaller numbers of children. My small group typically has 4-6 children.
Give each child a bingo mat and something to cover each picture (plastic cubes, plastic bingo chips, or plastic bear counters work great). This game is played the way traditional bingo is played.
Cut out the Calling Cards and shuffle them. Draw a card from the stack and call out the word (for example, “truck”). Children will search for the picture that rhymes (duck) on their mat and cover it if they have it. Keep playing until a child gets BINGO, when they have covered all 8 pictures on their mat. With Pre-K children (because they’re so young), I keep going until each child in the group wins, and we celebrate with each one as they get BINGO.
Download the Free Rhyming Bingo Game
Rhyme Freeze Dance
Play music and have the children dance around. When the music stops, call out a word, and the children have to freeze and think of a rhyming word before they can start dancing again.
My students enjoy these rhyming books by Jan Thomas! These are a great introduction to rhyming words.
Many More Rhyming Resources
There are many more resources for teaching rhyming here at PreKinders. Be sure to check out these ideas and printables:
- Nursery Rhyme Printable Posters & Cards
- Printable Rhyming Cards
- Printable Rhyming Match Games
- Rhyming Dice Game
Rhyming Materials from Amazon:
Don’t miss the Phonological Awareness page!
Originally published Sep 2009. Updated July 2023.
About Karen Cox
Karen is the founder of PreKinders.com. She also works as a full-time Pre-K teacher in Georgia. Read more...
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Download and print worksheets for teaching rhyming skills. Worksheets are separated into two levels basic and intermediate. Printable activities on this page include cut-and-glue rhyming worksheets, mini-books, matching lessons, and word webs.
Rhyming Words (Basic)
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Rhyming Match (Basic)
Rhyming Webs (Basic)
Rhyming mini-books (basic), rhyming cut-outs (basic), reading comprehension passage (basic).
Rhyming Words (Intermediate)
Rhyming cut-outs (intermediate).
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We have hundreds of worksheets specially designed for kindergarten students. Topics include colors, shapes, letters, and counting.
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Home > English Language Arts Worksheets > Rhyming
Rhymes are the act of placing words that have similar sounds usually at the end of poems or songs. The sounds are most often produced by complementing the vowels in the stressed syllables. The consonant in those same syllables must match as well. The following collection of activity sheets will help your students practice identifying words that rhyme. Activities include matching pictures whose words rhyme, connecting rhyming words from two lists, adding letters to create words that rhyme with a given prompt, writing words from a given picture prompt, and more. The worksheets will not only help students understand the concept of rhyming, but the thought behind each rhyme. Students will learn to write their own as you progress down this page. We also look at historically famous rhymes and their contribution to literature. There is a huge assortment of styles in the worksheets below. We really try to make it fun for the children and get them engaged in the work.
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Printable rhyming worksheets, click the buttons to print each worksheet and answer key., name those words.
Name the pictures in each row. Color the ones that rhyme.
Draw a line to the picture on the right whose name rhymes with the name of each picture on the left.
Find the Words To A Tune
A rhyme is a repetition of similar sounds in two or more words. Match the terms that go by the same tune.
What Does That Rhyme With?
Add a letter so that every word rhymes with dog or bed. Then there so more practice for you.
Words that Rhyme
Say the name of each picture. Write down at least three words that rhyme with the name of the picture.
Create From Scratch
Write down three words that rhyme with the picture that you are given. Number two is a hand and not a palm.
Find the word that completes each rhyme below. Write the word on the line.
Find the Rhymes
This wizard dropped the paper his spell was written on and now the words are all mixed up. His spell won't work if it doesn't rhyme. Help him to put the rhyming words back together by drawing a line between the words that rhyme.
Creating A Melody
Add a letter so that every word rhymes with pig. Add a letter so that every word rhymes with duck.
Pictures and Sounds
Words that sound good.
Draw a line connecting the words in each column that rhyme. Think of a word that rhymes with each word in bold. Write it on the line.
Name the pictures in each row. Circle the two that rhyme.
More than One at a Time
How many rhymes can you think of for each word?
Say It In Three Words
Say the name of each picture. Write down at least three words that ring with the name of the picture.
Match That Memory Game
Cut out the cards. Shuffle them, and lay them all face-down on a flat surface. The player take turns trying to uncover a match. The player with the matches wins
Memory Board #2
A second helping. Remember to print these twice. They can be very helpful.
Memory Board #3
What can be done to match those guys up?
How to Improve Your Ability to Rhyme Words?
The concept of a rhyme escapes some students, mostly because of popular culture and art forms. Students sometimes hear rhythms in nonexistent words due to this. They may be near or imperfect rhyming words that cut it in a song, but not in a literature form. There three common classifications of rhyming words. Single rhymes, which are the most common, are focused on the final syllable of the word. An example of a single would be the words: teary and weary. Double rhymes exhibit the second to last syllable stress, an example is the words: boasting and roasting. The last classification is called dactylic which is very uncommon in the English language. This is a three-syllable metered pattern where there is a stressed syllable followed by two unstressed syllables.
A rhyme is defined as the repeating of a word's last sound or sounds. For instance, the word "Ray" rhymes with "day" and so on. Internal rhyming occurs when words rhyme inside the same line. The ends of two lines frequently rhyme; this is known as external rhyme. In traditional poems, these end rhymes frequently repeat themselves, forming patterns. The most basic pattern is a couplet, consisting of two successive lines that rhyme. The renowned New England Primer opens with this pattern: "In Adam's Fall/ We all sinned." Rhyme is still used in modern poetry, but less frequently and in unanticipated ways.
Rhyming is frequently connected with poetry. Although the medium comprises non-rhyming forms, any new poet should learn to add rhyme to their work. It will take time and effort to master rhyming systems and certain forms of rhyme, but once you do, you'll be able to weave fascinating rhymes into your poetry and increase the overall quality of your work.
Traditional poetry contains a set of regular rhythms that make it simpler to memorize for recitation. Because they mimic the natural movement of the human body, these rhythms are very pleasurable. That's why poetry with regular rhythms are frequently matched to marching and dance music, enhancing the beat's impact. "The Battle Hymn," for example, is a stirring march because the lyrics and music complement each other. Many recent poems are written in free verse, which means they do not follow rigid sing-song patterns. However, a well-crafted rhythm gives aesthetic and emotional pleasure to this poetry as well.
Why Use Them?
A poem's overall impression is created by combining several other components with rhythm and rhyme. Despite the literal meaning of a poem's lines, figures of speech such as metaphor and irony bend that literal meaning and add emotion. Memories and connections from your past are evoked by sensory pictures of taste, touch, and smell. Read aloud to get the full impact of a poem's numerous methods, including its sound. It's not about decoding meaning in a poem; it's about experiencing an experience.
In poetry, each accent is usually separated by one to three syllables. Because readers can't predict their stress points, poems without a consistent and reliable pattern of accented and unaccented syllables appear jagged, disjointed, and chaotic. Consider singing a song in a monotone without a consistent beat. Consider a sentence that contains no punctuation. Meter allows a poem's ebb and flows to be consistent and predictable. Consistent patterns of specific components of words, such as syllables and accents, generate this rhythm.
How to Write Words That Rhyme?
Poem writing necessitates a continual awareness and cataloging of the environment around you. Most poets and writers have a notepad with them at all times to jot down any thoughts that come to them over the course of their daily lives. A notebook is also useful for poets in case certain lines or rhymes spring to mind that you'd like to utilize later.
In addition to rhyme, there are a number of additional approaches you may use to change the tone and rhythm of your poetry. Using assonance or consonance to play with vowel and consonant sounds in your poetry may be a good compliment to the rhymes. Alliteration gives a poetry texture and rhythm.
The tone of a poem is influenced by word choice, emotion, and voice, but a meter helps determine the rhythm to complement the underlying tone. Sad or dark poetry can contain three syllables between each accent to slow down the tempo. An intense, lively poem could only have one syllable between each accent, giving it a fast-paced, dynamic rhythm. Meter aids in the development of a good stride in a poet or reader, allowing desired emotions and sensations to be appropriately portrayed.
Most poetry includes rhyming words. Even though there are non-rhyming forms in the medium, you must learn how to incorporate rhyme into your work, especially if you are a novice poet. Writing poetry is hard and learning to use rhyming words can become intimidating. However, once you learn how to rhyme, including the rhyming words in your work will become super simple.
Here are some ways you can improve your ability to rhyme words:
1. Make Use of a Common Scheme
If you're looking for rhyme schemes, you're in luck- there are loads available that you can play with.
If rhyme words are new to you, you can stick to simple rhyme schemes such as the ABCB or ABAB rhyme scheme before you experiment with complex schemes.
2. Don't Be Afraid to Try New Poetry Forms
Trying different forms of poetry allows you to experiment and play around with different types of rhymes and rhyme schemes.
You can challenge yourself with a terza rima, limerick, villanelle, ballade, or Shakespearean sonnet. Keep in mind that other forms like free verse and haiku do not use rhymes.
3. Play Around with the Types of Rhymes
Most poetry only uses simple line rhymes. While these are great, you would be surprised to know how many other kinds of rhymes are available.
You can try techniques like internal rhyme, monorhyme, alternate rhyme, and enclosed rhyme. Write a poem and see which technique works well for you.
4. Try Your Hand at Sound Repetition
In addition to rhyme words, there are other ways to make your poems interesting. You can vary the rhythm as well as sound. Consonant and vowel sounds are a nice touch to include in your poems.
These include assonance as well as consonance, as these will go well with the rhyme words you use. If you are looking to add rhythm and texture to your poem, alliteration could be a great idea.
5. Work on Frequency
Keep in mind that when you rhyme, you have to focus on more than one syllable. This means that multi-syllable rhymes and multiple rhyme schemes can really help you improve your ability to rhyme words.
By increasing the frequency at which you rhyme, you will start to sound more aggressive. If you want to build aggression and garner audience interest, you can switch between frequencies when you are rhyming.
6. Pay Attention to Context
Rhyming is a great way to add a twist to your poem. However, it is important that your rhymes make sense and you don't end up rhyming about things that are out of context.
Make a note of the theme of your poem beforehand and keep referring to it when you write your rhymes. This will help you stay focused instead of writing a rhyming piece that makes absolutely no sense at all.
7. Make Use of a Rhyming Dictionary
When you are trying to improve your ability to rhyme words, there is no harm in using a rhyming dictionary.
Of course, it might have been a while since you have used one, but a rhyming dictionary can be extremely helpful, especially since you can use it to think of rhyming end words and create new rhymes for your poetry.
Rhyming words: ball and wall
Common Core Standards: Kindergarten Reading: Foundational Skills
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.K.1, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.K.2, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.K.3
This worksheet originally published in English Made Easy Preschool Rhyming for ages 3 to 5 by © Dorling Kindersley Limited .
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Early Literacy Rhyming Activities for Preschool and Pre-K
Rhyming is an important early literacy skill for your Pre-K, Preschool, and Kindergarten students to learn. While it may not seem like an easy skill to teach, you can make learning how to rhyme fun and exciting for the young children in your early childhood classroom.
I created these super fun and engaging rhyming games your little learners are going to love, and there’s even a freebie for you to try out! To take your phonemic awareness game to the next level grab your copy below!
Early Literacy Rhyming Activities
Let’s face it, you can recite nursery rhymes and read rhyming books until you’re blue in the face, but you’ll still have some kids who struggle to understand the concept of rhyming.
That’s because not all children learn at the same pace. Some may enter your classroom understanding a few basic phonemic awareness skills, while others will not know any. Before you know it, you may start to feel like you’re in a race against the clock to get your little learners kindergarten or first grade ready.
Fun Rhyming Activities for Preschool
Rhyming is an auditory skill, which means we learn to rhyme by listening to and hearing the sounds in words. But young children learn best when they experience things concretely first, hands-on activities can help them better understand abstract concepts.
Printable Rhyming Activities for Pre-K
Because you can’t touch it with your hands, rhyming can be considered an abstract concept. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to use real objects and picture cards, combined with fun rhyming games when teaching this concept to your students.
I’ve created a set of fun learning activities you can use to teach rhyming skills to the young children in your Pre-K and Kindergarten classroom. Here are the characters included in the Rhyming Activity Bundle .
- Unicorn ( Freebie, see below)
To prep these games you’ll need some paper, a printer, scissors, a box or bag and some tape – that’s it! Of course, if you want your games to last longer, you’ll probably want to laminate them too.
Teaching Rhyming in Pre-K
Start by printing out your character faces and rhyming cards, then cut them out with your scissors. Next, decide if you’ll use a box or a bag for the character’s base and cut a hole for the mouth. Then, use your tape to attach the character’s face to the base and you’re ready to play. I used a tissue box for my base, but you can use whatever you have on hand.
As promised, here’s your Unicorn freebie below!
How to Play the Rhyming Game
Using your assessment data, determine which small groups you will be working with.
After you’ve gathered your students in your small group, introduce the rhyming cards to them to familiarize them with each word and corresponding picture. This will help set them up for success when they play the game. For example, if a child sees the picture of the dragon and says “dinosaur” it wouldn’t rhyme with any of the other pictures. By “front loading” and introducing the pictures and words before you begin playing you’re setting them up for success. This will help eliminate any frustration or confusion during the game.
Invite your students to take turns drawing a card and saying the names of the pictures on the card. Then, ask them if those two pictures rhyme. If the pictures rhyme they can “feed” them to the character by placing them in the mouth. If the cards don’t rhyme, they can return them to the basket or you can ask them to turn them face down on the table so they won’t be chosen again.
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Matching rhyming words
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Phonics worksheets: matching rhyming words
For students who can sound out words, these worksheets focus on matching rhyming words . Students are encouraged to sound out the words to discover the words that rhyme, as well as to discover the visual clues in the spelling of words that are likely to rhyme with each other.
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