When I say to my second graders, “I like to rhyme,” they smile and respond with, “all the time." Ever since I was a young girl, I loved to write rhymes and poems. Whenever there was a special occasion like a birthday or holiday, I would create little homemade cards that included a made up poem.
My mom was the ever-supportive mother with anything I created (Thanks, Mom). “Oh, you could be a poet,” she would say as she read my latest creation. I would stand there and beam.
When I got older (high school/college), I continued to write poetry, but it was more of the “grown-up” kind (less rhyming). Then as I began teaching, I discovered a world of rhyming stories which I loved reading to my students. (see some of my favorites below).
In my fourth year of teaching I wrote a poem about Australian animals, which turned out to be my first published book, “Walking Through Australia.” I followed that one up with several more rhyming stories for the same company that published “Walking Through Australia.” That was many moons ago.
Now I have many rhyming stories sitting on my writing shelf waiting to find their way to a bookshelf. Someday …
Rhyming is hard work. I thought it came a little too easy to me, then I discovered there’s a whole system behind it- rhyme scheme and true rhyme and forced rhyme, etc. To learn more, I worked with an editor who specialized in rhyme. I learned a lot!
I use lots of rhymes and chants with my students. We use one of my favorites at the end of the school day when the students get ready to catch the bus. “No yakking,” I say. They all respond, “while you’re packing!” They laugh, but they get it. It works.
Below is a list of some of my favorites. Some are engaging stories (most are humorous), some are collections of poems (also funny). Check these titles out for your child or classroom. You can also find dozens of great books by searching “rhyming picture books” on Pinterest.
Do you have a favorite? Ever try writing in rhyme? Please share any rhyming tools/resources you use.
Are you like me? Do you like to rhyme . . . all the time?