In addition to sounding good and being fun, rhyming serves many purposes for early and older readers alike. For younger children just learning to read, rhyming books boost phonemic awareness, encourage an understanding of syllables, and increase fluency development in an entertaining, memorable way. Children of any age (and adults!) enjoy a good rhyming story because they flow, they are often silly, and they are full of imaginative imagery. While you can’t rely solely on rhyming books for early literacy skills, rhyming books still have a place in any classroom with children of any age.

Here are 19 of the best rhyming books out there!

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Rhyming picture books for younger children

1. Octopus Shocktopus!

By Peter Bently

Cover of Octopus Shocktopus! by Peter Bently
19 Rhyming Books for Children of All Ages
Via @radxreads

One day an Octopus drops (literally!) into town. What follows is a rhyming escapade of all the silly and helpful things the octopus does. Then the octopus vanishes!

2. Flopsy’s Enchanting Expedition

By Paul Banting

Along with his owl, squirrel, and fox animal pals, Flopsy the bunny journeys through an enchanted forest filled with challenges. The rhyming text brings the story to life while also helping children learn that teamwork and friendship can help them solve problems.

3. The Lion Who Wanted to Love

By Giles Andreae

This award-winning picture book combines rhyming text with vivid illustrations to tell the story of Leo, a lion who wants to show love to his friends but thinks that hugs are not for lions.

4. Farm Boots

By Lisl H. Detlefsen

Introduce children to agriculture throughout the seasons with this book told in rhyming verse. It focuses on the different types of boots necessary for farm work while also teaching children about the four seasons of the year.

5. I am a Nut

By Lauren Reichenbach

Help young children learn about confidence and self-esteem with this rhyming story about a nut who only focuses on his negative character traits. Over the course of the story, the nut’s friends help him see what a great little nut he really is.

6. Let’s Make Pizza with Carlizza

By Silvia Tabor

This silly rhyming story creatively tells the cooking steps Carlizza uses to make pizza. It includes a recipe, which would be a great extension lesson!

7. Giraffes Can’t Dance

By Giles Andreae

Giraffe dreams of dancing, but his long legs get in the way. This best-selling rhyming book encourages children to dream big.

8. The Barefoot King

By Andrew Jordan Nance

This book is perfect for helping children overcome frustration. The story is about Creet, the king, who rules a land where everyone is barefoot. Once day, the king stubs his toe, and decides to protect his people in a creative way. Throughout the rhyming text, children learn that there is often a solution to our frustrations if we look.

9. When Cherry Lost Terry

By Penny Phillips

This story is told through 26 rhyming limericks, one for each letter of the alphabet. Illustrated with bright pictures, each limerick features a different animal.

10. Nanette’s Baguette

By Mo Willems

From the much-loved creator of the Elephant and Piggie books, this rhyming book is set in a French bakery. The story follows Nanette, a girl who is making her first solo trip to the bakery to get a baguette.

11. Frog on a Log

By Kes Gray

This is a great little book for practicing phonics, but it also tells the story of a frog who does not want to sit on a log, even though he’s supposed to sit on something that rhymes with what he is. The catchy rhymes are educational and enjoyable.

12. Incredible You

By Rhys Brisenden

Cover of Incredible You by Rhys Brisenden
 19 Rhyming Books for Children of All Ages
Via @booksbytheboats

This rhyming book shows kids that it’s OK to wish to be something else sometimes, but that it’s always best to just be ourselves.

Rhyming books for older kids

13. Cicada Symphony

By Sue Fliess

This picture book’s rhyming facts about the life cycle of a cicada are appropriate for middle or even high school science classrooms.

14. Rollercoasters and Teacups

By Joe Glasgow and Alex Ries

This story takes children through an amusement park using various rides to teach them about the different paths their life could take. It is perfect for any child or young adult (a high school senior, perhaps?) who wonders what they want to be when they grow up.

15. Where the Sidewalk Ends

By Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein is a master of rhyme and humor, which is why his books stand the test of time. Even a middle schooler might have a hard time keeping a straight face while going through this collection of silly poems.

16. A Light in the Attic

By Shel Silverstein

Again, Shel Silverstein does not disappoint. This is another great book filled with goofy rhymes and silly poetry, perfect for older kids.

17. Wayne Gerard Trotman’s Rhyming Stories

By Wayne Gerard Trotman

An anthology of seven different stories, this book is 270 pages of rhyming poetry sure to inspire older children to write poems of their own.

18. Wonder: The Natural History Museum Poetry Book

By Ana Sampson

This book gives readers a walk through the Natural History Museum, learning a multitude of interesting facts about the world, all through rhyming poetry.

19. The Day the Universe Exploded My Head

By Allan Wolf

Older kids will learn interesting facts about the solar system through the rhyme, poetry, and vividly colorful illustrations of this fantastic book.

Encourage a love of reading and a thirst for knowledge with any of these captivating rhyming books!

19 Rhyming Books for Children of All Ages