Let’s rhyme, rhyme, rhyme

Rhyming, one of the phonological awareness skills, has been proven to be a key predictor of reading success. If you Google ‘research on rhyming’ you will find a great deal of information on the research that has been done to draw this conclusion. For this post, I want to look at practical ways to practice rhyming skills with young children. There are two components to rhyming – identification (Do hat and bat rhyme?) and production (Tell me a word that rhymes with hat.). Identification is the easier of the two skills, and the one we usually begin with. Children who struggle with rhyming will need a lot of modeling of this skill in the initial stages. Word family words (eg. _at, _in, _og, etc) are great for this.


  • In your large or small group times, call out 3 – 4 rhyming words and have children repeat them 2 – 3 times. (eg. hat, bat, cat, rat). To keep it fun, involve some action such as clapping, tapping the knees, head, shoulders, sitting with a partner and clapping hands, etc.
  • After reading a rhyming book, go back and say all the rhyming pairs and have children repeat them.
  • As children are lined up to go home or for lunch, have them identify if two words rhyme as they pass by.
  • Use cut and paste worksheets for children to find rhyming pairs (available in most teachers stores/educational materials catalogs).
  • Sort pictures of rhyming words (available in most teachers stores/educational materials catalogs).
  • Play rhyming Bingo (available in most teachers stores/educational materials catalogs).
  • Have children complete Itchy’s Rhyming Activity.  (see link below)

Remember:  for Identification, children are given both words – all they have to do is decide whether they rhyme or not.


  • In your large or small group times, call out 3 – 4 rhyming words and have children identify another word that rhymes with the group.  If children have difficulty with this skill, give them the initial sound (eg.  pin, fin, tin, w__)
  • When reading rhyming books, stop and see if children can identify the second rhyming word in the story.
  • When reading story books, select a few words from the story and have children think of words that rhyme.
  • In circle time, call out a word and have each child add a rhyming word – accept nonsense words
  • Find pictures that rhyme in catalogs or magazines and create a Rhyming Book.
  • Using a large picture or chart with pictures, play “I Spy” something that rhymes with __________.

I’m sure most of you have other rhyming activities you use.  Dig them out and rhyme, rhyme, rhyme!!!!

Link to Rhyming Activity Sheet:  https://www.itchysalphabet.com/ckfinder/userfiles/files/Itchy%20rhyming%20book.pdf