This research re-investigated the claim that beginning readers exploit information from the orthographic rime of clue words to help them to decode unfamiliar words. In Experiment 1, first-grade children were equally able to use orthographic information from the beginning, middle, and end of clue words to identify unfamiliar target words. Moreover, the improvement in reading end- (or orthographic rime-) same target words following clue word presentation reflected phonological priming. In second-grade children, with correction for retesting effects, improvement following clue word presentation for end-same and beginning-same target words was equivalent, although end-same target words improved more than middle-same target words. In Experiment 2, both first- and second-grade children were able to use orthographic information from the beginning, middle, and end of clue words to identify unfamiliar words. Clue word presentation enhanced the reading of beginning-same and end-same target words more than middle-same target words. Improvement was the same for beginning-same and end-same target words. Target word improvement following clue word presentation was greater than that for phonologically primed words only in children reading target words sharing the beginning sequence of the clue word. (C) 1998 Academic Press.