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Rhyming Words: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:05 Rhyming Words Fun
  • 0:45 What are Rhyming Words?
  • 1:46 When Do We See Rhyming Words?
  • 3:22 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor
April Inocente
Expert Contributor
Ginna Wilkerson

Ginna earned M.Ed. degrees in Curriculum and Development and Mental Health Counseling, followed by a Ph.D. in English. She has over 30 years of teaching experience.

I bet you know a few songs that have rhyming words in them! How about ''Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star''? Words that rhyme are all around you in stories, poems, and songs. You are going to learn what rhyming words are and why we use them.

Rhyming Words Fun

'Let's play a game where I say a word and you say a word that rhymes with my word,' said Jim to Molly.

'Sounds fun, let's play!' says Molly.

Jim and Molly Rhyming Game
Jim and Molly rhyming game

Jim: 'red'

Molly: 'bed'

Jim: 'sat'

Molly: 'rat'

Jim: 'funny'

Molly: 'bunny'

Jim: 'book'

Molly: 'look'

Jim: 'house'

Molly: 'ship'

'GAME OVER!' says Jim. 'House and ship do not rhyme. You could have said mouse. Mouse rhymes with house.'

'Oh, I see', said Molly. 'Ship could have rhymed with chip.'

What Are Rhyming Words?

Rhyming words are two or more words that have the same or similar ending sound. Some examples of rhyming words are: goat, boat, moat, float, coat.

When you are figuring out if two words rhyme, use your ears to listen as you say the words. If they sound the same or similar, they rhyme. For example: car and bar rhyme; house and mouse rhyme. If the two words sound different, they do not rhyme. For example: car and man do not rhyme; house and grass do not rhyme.

Say the words in the chart out loud and practice listening to words that rhyme and words that do not rhyme.

Rhyming Word Charts
Rhyming Word Chart

First, let's look at words that rhyme:

  • Hat / Bat
  • Fun / Sun
  • Bee / See
  • Honey / Money

Now, see how this is different from words that don't rhyme?

  • Jump / Star
  • Silly / Sick
  • Boy / Girl
  • Love / Truck

When Do We See Rhyming Words?

We see rhyming words in stories, poems, and songs. They can help the story, poem, or song sound more fun and interesting. Rhyming words can also help you memorize a story, poem, or song more easily. In 'The Alphabet Song' we sing,

A, B, C, D, E, F, G,

H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P...

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Additional Activities

Practice with Rhyming Words

Activity 1

Poems sometimes feature rhyming pairs at the end of the lines of poetry. Poems aren't required to rhyme, but many do. Short poems can be found in many greeting cards, like the birthday cards you get each year or the Valentine cards you give to friends. Look at some greeting cards and find the rhyming words. Is there a pattern to the rhyme? For example, some poems have lines one and two rhyme, and then lines three and four rhyme. Others rhyme at the end of every other line. Here are examples of each pattern.

"Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky."

"Roses are red
Violets are blue
Sugar is sweet
And I love you."

Whoops! What happened in that last example? The second and fourth lines rhyme, but the first and third lines don't. See if you can think of a word to replace either "red" or "sweet" to make those lines rhyme. Remember, the poem still has to make sense!

Activity 2

Most of the time words meant to rhyme are exact matches in the way they sound. But sometimes poets need a rhyming pair and there isn't any word that exactly matches what they've already said.

So what they do is use a "slant rhyme," also called a "half rhyme." Here are two examples:

oranger - stranger
hat - bad

Notice that the first pair share ending sounds and the second pair share vowel sounds. By the way, can you think of an exact rhyme for "oranges"? Trick question! There isn't one.

Activity 3

Some words have many rhymes. In fact, you could probably make an entire poem using words that rhyme with "hat" or "sun." See how many words you can think of to rhyme with each of the words below:

air
car
stand

Now add slant rhymes to your list. If you want a challenge, see if you can write a short poem using one of your word sets.

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