By Kathryn Peck
What parent or caregiver can’t recite the next line?
“Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see?” or try, “The sun has set not long ago …”
Let’s face it. Reading toddler books that rhyme is just a lot of fun; those rhymes stick with you. But identifying rhyming words carries a bit more significance than that. It’s also a foundational phonemic awareness skill for learning to read.
But identifying rhyming words carries a bit more significance than that. It’s also a foundational phonemic awareness skill for learning to read.
By learning to identify rhyming, children will begin to recognize sounds within words (e.g. /at/ in cat, rat, hat). They will develop the ability to recognize that words are made up of separate sounds. Paying attention to rhyming words means a child is listening and processing. As they become familiar with the stories, they may learn to anticipate the rhyming words and make predictions. And all of these play an important part in a child’s path to reading and writing.
So, grab a book of nursery rhymes or take a look at 12 of our favorite rhyming books for toddlers to add to your collection.
“Dinosaur Dance!” by Sandra Boynton
The blue Stegosaurus goes shimmy shimmy shake.
The ted Brontosaurus goes quivery quake.
“Where do Diggers Sleep at Night?” by Brianna Caplan Sayres
Where do dump trucks sleep at night
after dumping dirt and rocks?
Do they gather toys and dump them
in a giant truck toy box?
“Sheep in a Jeep” by Nancy Shaw
Sheep in a jeep
On a hill that’s
"Where is the Green Sheep” by Mem Fox
Here is the blue sheep
And here is the red sheep.
Here is the bath sheep
And here is the bed sheep.
“Jamberry” by Bruce Degen
Rumble and ramble
In a blackberry bramble
Billions of berries
For blackberry jamble
"Peek-A-Who?" By Nina Laden
Peek a moo!
Peek a boo!
Peek a zoo!
Peek a choo choo!
“Goodnight Moon” by Margaret Wise Brown
And goodnight to the old lady whispering “hush.”
“The Grumpy Morning” by Darcie La Brosse
I heard a goat begin to bleat,
“Where are my oats?” and she stamped her feet.
“One Duck Stuck” by Phyllis Root
to the duck.
No luck. Still stuck.
“Little Blue Truck” by Alice Shertle
Sheep said, “Baaa!”
Cow said, “Moo!”
“Oink!” said a piggy.
“Beep!” said Blue.
"All the World" by Liz Garton Scanlon
Hive, bee, wings, hum
Husk, cob, corn, yum!
"Llama Llama Red Pajama” by Anna Dewdney
For his mama.
About the author: Kathryn is the owner of Bicycle Pie and mom of 4 little ones. Also a writer, editor, and former owner of one of Boston's premiere baby boutiques, she continues to write about motherhood, children's products, family life, and all other things that test our skills and patience as parents.
Photo credit: iStock.com/FlyViewProductions