Small Ball


Recognize (e.g. "Do ball and all rhyme?") and/or produce (e.g. "What rhymes with ball?") rhyme words that end in -all.  

Lesson Plan

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Target Words:

  • ball
  • call
  • small
  • wall
  • hall
  • fall


  • A few small soft balls (e.g., nerf balls)
  • Cotton balls or paper balls
  • A small and a big ball

State and model the objective 
Tell the children they will play a game with a small ball and practice saying words that rhyme with ball: all, tall, call, small, fall, wall, hall. 

Practice the skill within an activity

Call for a Ball

  • Say, "We can call for a ball? and point out that call and ball rhyme.
  • Show the children two balls, a big ball and a small ball.
  • Let the children stand by a wall and call for a ball by saying, "I call for the small ball" or "I call for the big ball" then toss the children a ball according to which size of ball they called for.
  • Ask the children, "Which word rhymes with ball, big or small?"
  • Allow the children toss balls at the wall and have them identify if each ball is small or not small.

Throw a ball wall-to-wall

  • If in a place that has two walls fairly close together, try to bounce the ball from wall to wall (or just bounce a ball off of one wall).
  • Tell the children t call out, "Ball!" to alert the other children that they will be bouncing a ball against the wall and then let them take turns throwing a small ball against a wall.
  • Have the children call out "I call ball!" to alert the other children that they will try to catch the ball after it bounces against the wall.
  • Let the children place balls side by side so they line up wall to wall and comment, "We have wall-to-wall balls!"
  • Allow the children to roll a ball down the hall, trying not to let the ball knock into a wall.
  • Throughout the activity comment on the rhyming words (e.g., Wall and hall rhyme) and ask the children to recognize rhyming words (e.g., Do ball and call rhyme?).

Get the ball over the wall

  • Let the children stand side-by-side to make two walls and have them stand facing each other.
  • Place cotton balls or paper balls on the top of each wall (on the children's heads) and tell the walls not to let the balls fall (to hold still).
  • Tell each wall to stand tall and then get small (by stooping down or kneeling down).
  • Let the walls (the children standing side by side) fall.
  • Allow the children to try to get a ball (paper balls, cotton balls, or toy balls) over one "wall."
  • Throughout the activity comment on the rhyming words (e.g., "Wall and fall rhyme.") and ask the children to recognize rhyming words (e.g., "Do tall and small rhyme?").

Apply the skill

Produce words that rhyme with ball

  • Remind the children of the words they played with (all, tall, call, wall, fall, hall, small).
  • Ask the children to think of a word that rhymes with ball. 
  • If a child doesn't respond in a few seconds, give him/her an option:  
    • "How about hall?  Does ball rhyme with hall?" (Nod your head yes to let the child know that they rhyme). 
    • "Do small and ball rhyme?" (Nod your head yes).

Recognize words that do and do not rhyme 

  • Have the children repeat sets of 2 words (i.e., call, ball; small, wall; hall, house; ball, cat; fall, tall; tall, small; all, toy; call, wall; fall, stop; tall, all; hall, hug) and ask them to show you thumbs up if the words rhyme and thumbs down if the words do not rhyme.
  • If the children give an incorrect response, repeat the set of words again, emphasizing the end of each word.


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CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.K.2.A: Recognize and produce rhyming words.