What is Rhyme Scheme?

What is Rhyme Scheme? And other Free Poetry Resources...

Author: TeamTom Education , Tags: Poetry, Reading

( words) minutes to read 

A rhyme scheme is the pattern of rhymes at the end of each line of a poem or song. It is usually referred to by using letters to indicate which lines rhyme; lines designated with the same letter all rhyme with each other.

What is Ryhme Scheme – This video is perfect for a mini-lesson!

Examples of Rhyme Scheme

Here’s a well-known poem with a simple ABCB rhyme scheme.

Roses are red

Violets are blue

Sugar is sweet

So are you.

ABCB Rhyme Scheme

The end-rhyme for line 1 is the word red, but it doesn’t rhyme with another line. The word red represents the A in the rhyme scheme.

The word blue in line 2 represents the B in the rhyme scheme. It rhymes with the word you in line 4. You is also represented by the letter B to show it rhymes.

The word sweet in line 3 doesn’t rhyme with another line, so it gets a new letter in the rhyme scheme – C.

Here’s another example, but this time it’s a ABBA rhyme scheme.

Ketchup is red

Berries are blue

When I’m with you

I’ll bring the bread.

ABBA Rhyme Scheme

Teaching Rhyme Scheme

Most English Language Arts and Reading standards place rhyme scheme somewhere between 3rd- and 5th-grades.

In Common Core State Standards, rhyme scheme is alluded to as a “structural element of poems” beginning in 4th-grade:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.4.5: Explain major differences between poems, drama, and prose, and refer to the structural elements of poems (e.g., verse, rhythm, meter).

In the new Texas (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) rhyme scheme shows up in 3rd-grade:

TEKS 3.9B explain rhyme scheme, sound devices, and structural elements such as stanzas in a variety of poems.

In the New York State ELA Learning Standards rhyme scheme is not specifically mentioned but is alluded to in 4th-grade:

Craft & Structure 4R5: In literary texts, identify and analyze structural elements, using terms such as verse, rhythm, meter, characters, settings, dialogue, stage directions.

Teaching Resources for Poetry

We specialized in teaching strategies and resources, so it wouldn’t be right to end this post without sharing some teaching resources to help you out!

Poetry Task Cards from TeamTom on TeachersPayTeachers
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Poetry Task Cards for Rhyme Scheme - What is Rhyme Scheme?
Poetry Task Cards – Rhyme Scheme and Other Elements

Preview both of these poetry task card sets at our TeachersPayTeachers store! Click here to visit >>

About the Author

TeamTom Education is dedicated to creating engaging teaching resources and strategies that make learning awesome!

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