Child Poems and Stories

By Vanessa Rasmussen, © 2004, All rights reserved.

Nursery rhymes and other forms of poetry as well as stories play an important role in a child's developing phonemic awareness. We tend to think that learning to read begins with learning the alphabet. However, children first need to be aware of the individual sounds that make up words. Most of these stories & poems are also pleasant for an adult to read, as it is for a child to hear.

Poems help in understanding various figures of speech like metaphor and simile. Children find the rhymes and alliteration appealing and humorous. Many of the rhymes are short and easy for children to learn.

Few examples of all time favorite nursery rhymes are:

  • Hickory, Dickory, Dock.
  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Stars.
  • Humpty Dumpty

Many different forms of verse are included in traditional nursery rhymes, as stories, and riddles. Some examples are:

a. Story, such as Hark! Hark! The dogs do bark!
b. Games & verses, such as Pease Porridge Hot
c. Counting rhymes, such as One, Two, Buckle My Shoe
d. Lullabies & Prayers, such as Hush, Little Baby
e. Riddle & Tongue Twisters, such as Peter Piper Picked a Peck

Children's books of various types, including picture books, chapter books, fairy tales, board books, classics, pop-up books, and more help in improving a child's imagination and creativity and also their vocabulary. Picture books should have identifiable settings as they create strong impact of sense of place and objects through both text and illustrations.

Take some time out to read a story to your toddler, or follow the words on a computer screen if you use multimedia with your pre-school child. There are innumerable and wonderful traditional nursery rhymes, finger plays and action songs that you can play with the kids. Parents and their children should read poems aloud together to learn about rhythm and repeated sounds in language. Make sure to point to the words on the pages while you read aloud to your child. Move your finger from left to right. Have books, magazines, and papers around the house, and let your child see that you like to read, too.

A child who cherishes the written word will not only garner the benefits one gets from being absorbed in a great book, but he/she will also tend to perform better in school compared to a child who is not encouraged to read from an early age. Although books usually have a suggested age, don't let that limit you. A child's taste will often surprise you. There are varying reasons why children are attracted to certain books during their different stages of development. But one thing is certain, a very young child will fall in love with any book, provided mom or dad sits with him/her to read and explore it repeatedly.

Copyright 2001, 2004. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article in whole or in part without written or verbal permission is strictly prohibited. For information about reprinting this article, contact the copyright owner: Vanessa Rasmussen, Ph.D, Starting a Day Care Center,