Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Books to Teach the 37 Most Common Rimes: The Rime Poetry Book

Children using Elkonin Boxes

Wylie and Durrell in their 1970 article “Teaching VowelsThrough Phonograms” (Elementary English, 47, 787–791),identified 37 rimes that can be found in 500 words commonly used in primary-level texts. In this post I outline a process and a selection of text that can be used to teach these 37 rimes to children.


  • onsets All the beginning letters up to the vowel: spend; know; string; band.
  • rimes (also called phonograms and word families) The vowel and following consonants within a syllable. 
  1. Identify the rime or rimes being studied. Let students see the rime printed.
  2. Read aloud the selected text first for enjoyment.
  3. Reread the selected text and have the section of text with the rime on chart paper or if using a big book have student nearby so they can see the text. 
  4. Have students identify the rime being studied in the text. Using highlighter tape or a highlighter, have students mark the text identifying the rime.
  5. Provide copies of the poem for the children to glue into their Rime Poetry Book. The book should be organized alphabetically, beginning with -ack and ending with -unk.
  6. Have the children highlight the rime being studied as you read the poem aloud. Encourage the children to read along.
  7. This text may become a familiar rereading text for students to read during independent reading.
  8. During shared and guided reading, pay attention to how well students use these rimes to problem solve when confronted with an unknown word. Praise such efforts.


A few books you might want to use when teaching rimes.


-ail: What is Whitefrom Hailstones and Halibut BonesBath Time Pirate from Switching on the MoonWhen a Line Bends . . . A Shape Begins

-ain:  There Once Was a Man Named Michael Finnegan, In the Heart of South Dakota from The Frog Wore Red Suspenders

-ame: What is Orange? from Hailstones and Halibut BonesWhat is Yellow? from Hailstones and Halibut BonesFifteen Animals!


-ayWalter de la Mare's "Dream Song" from Beastly Verse, To Any Reader, and Bed in Summer from A Child's Garden of VersesDream Animals: A Bedtime JourneyMy Shadow, Wedding Day from Under the Sunday Tree, Little Blue Truck
-est Big Red Barn, Snowflakes from Hand RhymesThe Frog Wore Red SuspendersThe Best Nest, My Nest is Best, You Ought to Meet Danitra Brown from Meet Danitra Brown

-ick: Jack Be Nimble from The Cat and the Fiddle: A Treasury of Nursery RhymesHickory Dickory Dock from Mary Had a Little Jam
-ight: Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site, Walter de la Mare's "Dream Song" from Beastly Verse, "Star light, star bright" from Over the Hills and Far Away: A Treasury of Nursery RhymesWhat is Purple? from  Hailstones and Halibut BonesI Took the Moon for a WalkLittle Blue Truck

-ill: Two Little Blackbirds ,  Where Goes the Boats? from A Child's Garden of Verses
-it: Coke-Bottle Brown from Meet Danitra Brown

-oke: Little Bo-Beep from Black Mother Goose Book

-op: Do Your Ears Hang Low from Neighborhood Sing AlongHop on PopTen Apples Up on TopListen Listen, Song from the Pop-Bottlers from Poem Stew

-ump: Jump Frog, Jump, Me and Joe Lining Up After Recess from Messing Around the Monkey Bars and Other School Poems for Two Voices, Jack and Jill from Mary Had a Little JamLittle Blue Truck

-unk: What This Story Needs Is a Pig in a Wig, Eletelephony from Beastly VerseOne Duck Stuck: A Mucky Ducky Counting Book

Related Posts: 
Early Literacy Series #1: Shared Reading & Writing and CAP
Early Literacy Series #2: Shared Reading Resources for Preschool and Kindergarten
Early Literacy Series #3: Teaching Rhyming and Initial Sound Instruction
Early Literacy Series #4: Teaching Sound and Letter Identification in Kindergarten
Early Literacy Series #5: Teaching Blending & Segmenting through Books and Poetry
Books to Teach the 37 Most Common Rimes: The Rime Poetry Book. 

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