Do you know what’s one of the best predictors of how well a child will learn to read? It’s if he knows his nursery rhymes.
Jack and Jill went up the hill.
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall.
Baa, baa, black sheep, have you any wool?
Jack Sprat would eat no fat. His wife would eat no lean.
All these nonsensical verses really do matter. They matter, because they rhyme. Rhyming is fun. And it’s a very important part of reading success.
Rhyming teaches children how language works. It helps them notice and work with the sounds within words. When children are familiar with rhyming words, they learn to anticipate more rhyming word. This prepares them to make predictions when they read, another important reading skill. Rhyming is important for writing, too. It helps children to understand the words that share common sounds often share common letters. For example, the rhyming words cat and bat both end with –at.
At ELP 3 B children were busy with a rhyme puzzle where they had to club all the rhyming words. When listening to rhyming words, children create a mental picture, expanding their imagination.
Suddenly, the formidable task of learning to read is a “piece of cake”!