In this activity, you will take turns forming rhyming words with your child.
This game teaches the concept of syllables and the difference between consonants and vowels.
Objective(s) of activity:
Starting from a chosen word, you will take turns forming words that rhyme. The person who can form more of such words wins the round.
Targeted age group:
Children 5 and older can play this game.
Number of participants:
One child is sufficient to play this game.
Inform your child that you are going to play a rhyming game where you will take turns forming rhymes.
The first step is to then choose a word. Start with one syllable words like ‘cat’, ‘pot’ ‘dog’ etc. In this round, each response must also only be one syllable words.
Dog – Log – Cog – Fog – Hog – Jog – Clog - Frog
Once a person is unable to offer a rhyming word but the other person can, the round ends with the person who formed one more word getting the point. A new round starts with a new word.
After a few rounds with single syllable words, you can then allow rhyming words to have more than one syllable.
This is an opportune time to talk about the fact that even in multi-syllable words, a word is considered to rhyme only if the final syllable of the word rhymes.
Sock – Peacock Rhyming words
Sock – Hockey Non-rhyming words
Thus ‘sock’ rhymes with ‘peacock’ but not ‘hockey’.
You can then move on to starting words that have more than one syllable.
Spotter – plotter – hotter – water – daughter – otter
When looking for two-syllable words that rhyme, you need to take out the first sequence of consonant sounds and the rest of the sounds must be the same.
Note: The vowel sounds of English are made by the letters ‘a’, ‘e’, ‘i’, ‘o’, ‘u’. All other letters make consonant sounds (unless they are silent, eg. psychology).
So, when we remove the ‘sp’ sound in ‘spotter’ we are left with the sound made by ‘otter’. You can check that this sound occurs in all the words in the example above even if the spellings are different.
You can then move up to three syllable words.
Notes for scaling up difficulty:
For an additional challenge, you can restrict the responses to have a fixed number of syllables. For example, you can require that all responses have only two syllables.
Eg. Suppose the starting word is ‘dog’
Dog – Tree frog – Hedgehog – Backlog – Unclog – Long jog
Notice that of these ‘long jog’ is not a single word. In this more challenging variant, you can allow such responses as otherwise the game becomes quite difficult.
Did you turn your child into a regular Dr. Seuss? Let me know in the comments!