Are nursery rhymes important to teach our children?
Written by Erica Smith on Sept 20th 2018
Are you one of those parents that finds singing and reading to be daunting, boring or mundane?  Let me help you put some SPARKLE and ZIP into it by showing you some fun, engaging and educational ways to help your child learn and explore nursery rhymes.  Learning nursery rhymes is so important for your child's language development.

Nursery rhymes help children develop an ear for rhythm and rhymes.
As your child develops an ear for rhyme and rhythm they will develop an early sensitivity to the sounds of language and will learn sounds and syllables; which will help them learn to read!  My boys love having visuals.  So, I printed out a nursery rhyme poster to go along with our learning theme.  Recently, we have been learning about spiders, because we have noticed more and more of them as the fall season approaches.  My preschooler likes to find letters on the poster, my kindergartner finds rhyming words or sight words and my second grader loves to help them on their language hunt as well as find big words he doesn't know yet.

Nursery rhymes can improve motor (muscle) skills.
I love bringing learning to life.   Here are some fun ideas to go along with "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" nursery rhyme.  

1 - Set up a 'water spout' using aluminum foil in your driveway.  Curve the edges so the spiders stay on the foil.  Find small plastic spiders or other light objects you may have around the house (we used small pom poms).  Place the spiders at the top of the water spout.  Have your child fill up a bucket with water and pour the water down the water spout to wash the spiders out!  This is a great time to sing the nursery rhyme song as you play together.

2 - Set up a spider web using a hula hoop or basket and painters tape.  Then have your child throw cotton balls or pom poms at the spider web.  Count how many 'spiders' stick to the web.

3 - My boys love making and wearing crowns.  So, I knew it would be a great time to put together a spider life cycle crown and learn about how spiders grow.

4 - Make a sun using a paper plate, yellow & orange markers and scissors.  Have your child color their sun and then cut partially into the circle to make the sun's rays.

5 - Work on spider themed words by building with Bananagrams or Scrabble letter tiles.

Nursery rhymes introduce children to basic story structure.
It is important for young children to have victories in reading.  To help my children with this, I put together an emergent reader based on "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" nursery rhymes.  There are definitely hard, big words in nursery rhymes; so in using this booklet my children build their vocabulary, memorize the nursery rhyme so they can "read" on their own (which builds confidence), learn that we read from left to right, and are introduced to basic story structure: problem & solution, cause & effect, etc.

Need any of the printables for this blog post?  Check out the my TpT store resources by clicking the pictures below.

Erica Smith

Erica Smith is a Professional Preschool Educator and loves working with and teaching young children.  Erica is also a mother of three boys, and started creating fun and engaging learning activities for them as alternatives to TV, Netflix, and video games.  She now helps other teachers and mothers educate, engage and empower young children by selling the activities online. 
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