As a parent, you probably heard and sang a wide variety of nursery rhymes before. You might learn them from watching tv, from your parents, or your preschool teacher. Chances are, you also sing these songs in your head when you’re just not in the mood to sing. It’s easier to recall the rhythm and lyrics of these rhyming songs than remembering other songs.
And if you have asked yourself once or twice why rhyming songs are so popular, to begin with, and why rhyming is important in a child’s learning and development, then this article is just for you. But before you jump into discovering why rhyming is important. So first, let’s dive into knowing what rhyming is.
What is Rhyming?
Rhyming is the act of using words, sounds, or characters that create a relationship or association between two or more words, sounds, or characters. Rhyming is often done through the repetition of sounds but may also be done by using similar-sounding letters, syllables, and letters in multiple positions.
Why Is Rhyming Important for Preschoolers?
There are several reasons why rhyming is important for preschoolers, but this article will focus more on giving you the five most important reasons.
1. Helps Develop Pre-reading Skills
One of the main reasons rhyming is important for preschoolers is that it helps them develop their pre-reading skills. Through rhymes, preschoolers can enjoy tracing patterns and sounds in words, syllables, and letters that may help to improve their reading ability. In addition, rhyming helps children to build vocabulary.
2. Improve Oral Language Skills
Through the study of rhyme and rhythm, preschoolers also develop their oral language skills. Since rhymes take advantage of alliteration and repetition, this can help stimulate children’s curiosity as it creates a pleasing sound to the ear. In addition, it helps develop their vocabulary and their ability to put words into sentences.
3. Learns How To Write
Rhyming for preschoolers helps them develop their motor skills, as it requires them to write what they are singing. With rhyme, children can write letters, words, and sentences until they can read. This skill encourages writing habits later on in life.
4. Learning to Predict What’s Coming
When rhyming, children learn to predict what will happen next in the pattern of the words in each rhyming pattern. It helps preschoolers develop their critical thinking skills to predict what they’ll hear or read next.
5. Rhyming Helps Preschoolers Feel a Sense of Joy and Happiness
Let’s admit it. We all love to sing and perform some activity that rhymes. Whether it’s singing, dancing, or performing an activity, the joy we get from doing so is often unexplainable. But thanks to preschoolers, we can understand why this happens, especially when exposed to rhymes in their environment.
How to Teach Rhyming to Preschoolers?
When teaching your child rhyming skills, start early. The earlier they are taught, the better because they will remember them later in life. That’s why it is important to teach them well to keep their mind sharp. And the most effective when teaching rhyming to kids is through Play.
Children learn through play, so when you incorporate games and activities in teaching them about rhyming, chances are they’ll retain it for a long time.
Since we are talking about teaching rhyming to kids, you probably wonder what some of the best rhyming games to use for your child to enjoy learning. That’s why in this article, you will discover 12 fun and exciting rhyming games and activities for kids that will spark their interest in learning the concept of rhyming. Rhyming is a phonemic awareness skill, so rhyming activities and games you will find here focus more on practicing and understanding the sounds and letters of different words.
8 Fun and Exciting Rhyming Games and Activities for Preschoolers
1. Rhyme Your Food
It is one of the most common activities for kids. Just rhyme foods that are already prepared, for example, carrots, oranges, bananas. There are endless rhyming food words that you can use. You can also choose to do this activity visually by doing it on paper, where your learner will draw the food items instead of saying it aloud.
2. Rhyming Board Game
It is one of the most fun rhyming games for preschoolers because it involves playing board games with your child or any preschoolers around you, which will help them have fun while learning something new at the same time. Of course, as a parent, you should plan the rhyming words as you play the game so that your child will be able to match them easily. However, if your child is unfamiliar with rhyming, you can still play the game using random rhyming words.
3. Rhyme with Letter Sounds
This rhyming activity will help kids remember the sounds of letters in words, especially when written in capital letters. It is one of the easiest ways to teach preschoolers out there because it only involves writing several letters on a piece of paper and then asking them how that letter sounds when combined with another letter sound or pattern.
4. Rhyming Puppets
A fun way to encourage rhyming is to use puppets, especially if your child loves puppets or is starting to develop an interest in this craft, so he can enjoy learning new things through this tool. Another great thing about using puppets for preschoolers is that it helps them practice their motor skills as it requires lots of hand-eye coordination. Plus, since they are just made of fabric, they are very easy to clean up.
5. Rhyming Memory
You may use picture cards for this rhyming game. Kids can play in small groups with their friends. Just like a simple memory game, the children take turns turning over two cards. Have the kids say the words aloud, then help them identify if those words are rhyme. This activity will keep kids engaged and help strengthen your child’s memory.
6. Rhyming Bingo
You can purchase rhyming bingo games at any local and online store. It is a fun activity to teach kids about rhyming and many more. There are many themes and sets of cards you can find, but of course, you can make your own set as well. You can even play this at parties or with other people who like to play rhyming bingo as well.
7. Rhyming Scavenger Hunt
Another educational rhyming game that your child can do is a Rhyming Scavenger Hunt. This game requires them to go around the house or any place they choose and hunt for rhyming words. Again, remember to prepare some items beforehand, like food, toys, cutouts, so they’ll be easy to grasp through sight.
8. Rhyming Puzzles
You can either purchase it or make one for your preschooler. Great rhyming puzzles use colorful pictures that kids can identify. It is also vital to consider if the kids are assembling the puzzles without assistance. Encourage the kids to state ear words aloud so they can hear and determine which sound is the same.
Once you teach the concept of rhyming to your kids, it can give them the edge over other preschoolers. Not only will you be teaching them the concept of rhyming, but you’re also introducing them to learn and study additional words and sounds. In addition, by facilitating your child’s phonemic awareness skills, you’ll be helping them in their literacy skills in the future.
At Baby Steps Daycare & Preschool, we also give emphasis to Phonemic Awareness. We believe that kids should be taught these skills at an early age to build a strong foundation for reading and writing. If you have any tips to add, please feel free to contact us.