One of the many skills we are currently working on this time of year is rhyming. During the school year, we spend a lot of time talking about the sounds we hear in words. Students practice these skills as they start to sound out words for what we like to call “kid writing”. As we move through the school year, we begin focusing on the sounds we hear at the end of a word and how some words share the same ending sounds. Sometimes, this can be tricky as many students still focus on words that share the same sound at the beginning of a word such as “ball” and “bat”. The more we practice and show examples of rhyming words, the more the students are able to grasp the concept.
This week, we have been playing a rhyming game that asks the students to find three concrete items that will rhyme with the picture they are given. The students delight in finding rhyming words and placing the toy on their picture card. As teachers, we like this game because it provides the student with an opportunity to physically pick up an object, say the two words out loud, and decided whether or not they rhyme. Having a concrete item to touch, makes the task more meaningful and therefore makes for a stronger connection in the child’s brain.
Another fun way to practice rhyming, on the go, is to give your child a word and see if they can come up with a rhyming word to match it. It could be a real word rhyme such as “cat” and “bat” or it could be a silly rhyme such as “Forst” and “morst”. This game can be played at the grocery market, the car, or while waiting for the doctor. If your child is having trouble coming up with a rhyme, start by giving them an example or using concrete objects such as toys or commonly found objects. What’s most important is that the game should be fun! There is nothing more powerful than a child who learns through play and therefore loves to learn!