Is Rhyming Important?

Years ago rhyming was a main pre-k and kindergarten standard that was explicitly taught. Many teachers used nursery rhymes to help teach rhyming, as well as other skills. But I noticed a shift several years ago when Common Core was implemented. Teachers began to say that rhyming wasn’t as important and ‘people’ were suggesting that time needed to be spent in other academic areas. Yikes! But much like every other field, education is constantly evolving and research is always being conducted. And while there have always been educators who have believed in the importance of phonological awareness, the surge of interest in the Science of Reading has brought a reignited purpose in focusing on phonological awareness. The truth is rhyming is important. These are my favorite ideas to teach rhyming to little learners.

Ideas for Teaching Rhyming in Kindergarten. These ideas are tried and true from my classroom and how I taught my students. Including: printables, books, games, etc.

Ideas for Teaching Rhyming

Rhyming can be introduced as early as the first week of school! I love to use the students’ names to have an ‘impromptu’ rhyming game. For instance, teach your students The Name Game song…Sarah, Sarah, Sarah, bo barah, bo-na-na, fa-,na, fo farah; fe, fi, mo, marah, Sarah. You can do 4 or 5 students names a day. You can also draw their names randomly, which makes it a little more suspenseful and fun! Here are a few more suggestions for finger play songs and video songs.

Watch My Students Version of Rhyming Bridge HERE!

Time to Teach Rhyming!

Welcome to your teacher mini-lesson on teaching rhyming to little learners! Of course, this is just my take and ideas that have worked for me. As I always say…do what works best for you, your students and classroom. I’m going to break it down into little sections for each piece, but I do follow the gradual release model.

Introduce Rhyming

I introduce rhyming with an interactive anchor chart. I call my clip art friend, Rhyming Rosie and she teaches us the definition of rhyming and I share a few audible examples. I then read a rhyming book and ask the students to listen for the rhyming words. Sometimes I have the students give a thumbs up when they hear the rhyming words. If you choose to do this, make sure that you model the thumbs up and your rules and expectations. Here are few books to use when teaching rhyming!

Books for Teaching Rhyming

After reading a rhyming book, we sing a rhyming song or watch/participate in a rhyming video. I shared some suggestions earlier in this post. This mixes up the rhyming lesson, so they can get music and movement in and not be just sitting and getting. Next up, let’s play a game of mystery rhyming words!

Mystery Rhyming Words Game & Interactive Anchor Chart

Here is how to play mystery rhyming words. Take a brown paper bag or container and add in some rhyming picture pairs. I try and add enough so that each student gets 1. If there is an uneven number of students, then I play along to make it even. I have each student reach in the bag and retrieve a rhyming picture. After everyone has their picture, I have the students get up and circulate among their peers, trying to find their rhyming match. I give them 3-4 minutes to do this. I move among the students and assist if needed. Finally, I have the students come up and share their rhyming match and we glue it onto our rhyming anchor chart. This makes the anchor chart interactive and makes it more meaningful and purposeful.

Rhyming Match Pocket Chart Activity

This pocket chart activity can be modeled by you the teacher, or you can have students demonstrate how to use this activity. Students will match the rhyming pairs in the pocket chart. They can sort them by yes or no, or just sort ALL of the rhyming pairs. Don’t forget that this activity can be used as a whole or small group game. But I like to keep this activity in my pocket chart station for the students to practice their rhyming!

Rhyming Independent Practice

All of the ideas and activities that I have shared so far are intended to help teach and practice within a whole or small group. But as educators, we know the importance of having students complete work independently. This allows us to see exactly what a student can do independently and their mastery of the specified skill. So after our whole group lesson, songs, and games, it is time for the students to go back to their individual work spaces and show what they know. I like to use these various activities.

Rhyming Kit for Little Learners

Here is everything you need for introducing, teaching & practicing rhyming with your little learners! Includes:


Rhyming made easy from Kindergarten Chaos! I created all of this to help YOU teach Rhyming! #MyTeacherWins #MicroRaveWithRoni #backtoschool2021

♬ FEEL THE GROOVE – Queens Road, Fabian Graetz

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