Less than half a century ago, it was quite a common practice for parents to sing rhymes, chants, and short songs to their young children as they grew. It would be accompanied by rhythmic dancing, bouncing, as well as so many games and hand actions. But this is a vanishing trend, according to research. Today's youth are no longer being exposed to these rhymes and songs and may be missing out on some vital benefits.
But singing, storytelling, and rhyming don't have to be lost arts and can be done at any time or place. You can bust a rhyme while your kid is getting ready for school, having their breakfast, bathing, in the car, while walking in the park, or while sitting at the table. It makes it easy to integrate into your daily activities with hardly any thought.
Exposure to rhymes, repetition, and rhythm is an integral part of developing literacy skills early; repeating is essential to absorb words and ideas, and it strengthens the brain while in its developmental stages. Consistency forms the foundation for learning, and it creates security in education. Furthermore, the use of rhymes, songs, and rhythm in reading or talking with your baby is fun and catchy for your young audience. These rhymes teach all about the sounds of words before kids understand their meaning. Here are six critical reasons why using rhymes is crucial to early literacy.
1Rhyming Improves Memory And Cognitive Development
Nursery rhymes may seem menial, but they have the clues that help children form memory skills and a sharp recall. Almost all rhyming verses follow an underlying order that includes a beginning, a middle, and an ending. This simple structure teaches a child all about sequential order and allows him to wrap his mind around cause and effect. When a child learns to use rhymes, they develop the capacity to view words and sounds in a new way and string them together like beads.
Nursery rhymes also help set the foundation for the inferencing skills children need when encountering new words and assimilating their meaning and context. Through the exposure of these rhymes, children also learn to segment words into their phonemes. In turn, it helps your child's comprehension and decoding skills. Rhymes and songs also carry fascinating mental pictures that fire the imagination for these young minds. And because they are so much fun, rhyming verses are often the preferred choice of reading material.
2Rhyming Develops Literacy
There have been numerous studies that have shown rhymers turn out to be better readers. Nursery rhyme readers make a terrific introduction to the elements of literacy in word constituents and phonetics. Here's a good example: A child saying the simple phrase "the cat on the mat has a hat" understands that "at" is the common denominator. By understanding words in this way, your child will develop "phonemic awareness." It will provide a head start in their capacity to absorb reading concepts in the future.
The results of the comparison made on the literacy capacities of school-aged children have shown that those exposed to rhyme at an early age have improved capabilities than those who were not. With this in mind, it may be an excellent plan to focus on rhythmic-related activities, songs, and rhymes during those formative years before school begins. You can sing songs and make rhymes as part of your daily routines - when getting in the car, getting dressed, brushing the teeth, or taking baths. "Here we go round the Mulberry Bush..." is an excellent option with a catchy rhythm and can be applied to all kinds of daily activities, so is this rhyme: "This is the way we wash our hands, eat our veggies, brush our teeth, clean the room..." Start as early as you can, and you will make it fun.
3Rhyming Promotes Language Development
Rhymes promote language learning in a variety of ways. First of all, a child will hear the sounds of vowels and consonants as they listen to and remember the rhymes. Speaking rhyming verses will teach the child how to form these sounds to make words. They will also show the proper inflection, pitch, rhythm, and cadence needed to communicate effectively.
Nursery rhymes broaden vocabulary by exposing children to new and imaginative words; think of the "Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe" - it includes colorful terms like "whipped," "broth," and "soundly." Children are often inclined to act out the rhymes they know, and this allows them to understand words in a whole new way. Your child will also be able to discriminate between texts that do rhyme and those that do not. You can reinforce these skills by playing rhyming games with your child as a time filler. Think of all the things that rhyme with "pig;" your children will think the game is entertaining and will be able to develop this capacity for themselves further.
4Encourages Social And Emotional Development
While they may seem like an unimportant pastime with no substance, there has been plenty of empirical evidence to the contrary. Rhymes are the perfect way to convey the fundamentals of reading, language, and memory skills, and the whole time, your child just thinks they are having fun. You can make a rhyming book together as your child becomes more adept at rhyming. Write a word at the top of the section in big, bold, fun letters, and collect all the words that rhyme with "fish."
Rhyming is a great way to reinforce the foundational skills of literacy. When kids hear the rhyme "Jack Be Nimble," they are learning about more than a fleet-footed rogue; they are preparing their minds for future reading skills. Studies have shown that there is a significant connection between knowing which words rhyme and why they rhyme. Good rhymers also tend to have a better grip on reading skills.
5Good Rhymers Tend To Be Good Readers
There has been extensive research that shows an indispensable correlation between the capacity to master rhymes and the readiness to grasp reading concepts. Rhyming is a critical way to build foundational skills in literacy. As preschoolers listen to and say rhyming verses, they begin to hear sounds within the words and recognize if those sounds are the same.
Nursery rhymes help foster the essential, necessary skills of literacy and proper speech development. Children get introduced to skills like discriminatory listening. It has shown to be vital to understanding the lyricism of words.
6Rhyming Develops Speech
Rhymes present new ways for children to articulate their language and practice with pitch and voice modulation. They can say these rhymes as loudly or foolishly as they want without fear of being criticized. Nursery rhymes are thus the natural first choice for their comical and fascinating rhythm and content.
This activity exercises the mouth and jaw muscles used to form words correctly. It also allows the children to improve their listening comprehension skills, something that is often left out. But through rhymes and rhythm, this skill can be learned effectively. Working with these lines and verses can allow a child to grasp the concept of word segmentation better.
Other benefits gained from rhymes and rhyming skills are auditory discrimination and improved phonemic awareness; even a more extensive vocabulary is there. These are fundamental skills upon which the rest of literacy depends. From here, your child will be able to handle better the skills they will need for writing, speaking, and communication as a whole.
The best thing about this learning process is that it is so much fun and gets quickly introduced to our everyday lives. Never underestimate the capacity that rhymes and rhythm will have on allowing your child to develop what they genuinely need for competence in literacy skills. By taking a moment to speak in verse and rhyme with your child, you are reinforcing the skills they will need to be competent in the modern world.