Rhythm for Reading
Makes Better Writing
Never underestimate the power of
rhyme for building reading and writing skill in a child. So much of our
language is sound-based. The best writers "hear" what the words would sound
like if read aloud. It helps them contain the length of their sentences. It
helps them match the phrases they write to the approximate length of time it
would take to say them aloud without taking a breath. Shakespeare was the
master of this: his writing is just as melodious on paper as when spoken aloud.
The simple rhythms of childhood
poetry set the groundwork for more complex rhythms in adult prose. The more you
sing and rhyme with a small child, the better "ear" for reading and writing
that child will develop.
As you work around your home or
drive around in the car, challenge your child to create poetry with you. You
say the first line: "I saw a car. . ." and the child might add, "I saw a car
and it was far." And on you go!
It's fun to think up words that
rhyme with other words and post a list on your refrigerator, adding to it as
Ask a librarian to suggest
children's poetry books to check out and bring home. You might keep a
three-ring binder with photocopies of poems you like to read aloud from time to
time, adding your child's own poems as he or she creates them.
Nothing beats reading the old
nursery rhymes aloud to and with your child. Memorizing them is great! Singing
them is even better! If your child acts them out while reciting them, that
instills movement along with memorization and speaking aloud - a multisensory
experience that will pay off in the years to come.
By Susan Darst Williams • www.GoBigEd.com • Grammar Granny
001 • © 2006