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Nursery Rhymes

Introducing a Nursery Rhyme


You can use several different techniques when introducing your child to a nursery rhyme. You can recite the nursery rhyme with or without singing it to a tune. You can play a tape of nursery rhymes for your child, dancing with them as you listen. Alternatively, there are excellent books and videos available on the internet. Read them to your child and discuss the pictures with them, or have them point to parts of the pictures that they can identify. You can even act out the nursery rhyme with an older child. But remember: the main part of nursery rhymes that infants and toddlers love is enjoying their rhythms and tunes.


Here are some fun activities you can do with these specific nursery rhymes:


Humpty Dumpty



Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.


Please click on the link to watch Humpty Dumpty


Cut out an oval shape from thick paper and draw a face on it to represent Humpty Dumpty. Then cut it into two or three pieces, depending on your child’s level. Help him fit the pieces together and take them apart again. Try some fun egg crafts, or boil and paint some eggs and have an outdoor egg hunt.


Little Miss Muffet


Little Miss Muffet,
Sat on a tuffet,
Eating her curds and whey;
Along came a spider,
Who sat down beside her,
And frightened, Miss Muffet, away.


Please click on the link to watch Little Miss Muffet


This nursery rhyme is a lot of fun to act out with your child. Let your child be Little Miss Muffet, while you play the spider. Set your child down, while you creep away behind a corner or a piece of furniture, and say the first two lines of the nursery rhyme. When you get to “Along came a spider,” creep up behind your child and tickle her, to “frighten” her away.

You can also try these spider crafts -, which are great for either Little Miss Muffet or Incy Wincy Spider.


One Two, Buckle My Shoe


One, two,
Buckle my shoe;
Three, four,
Knock at the door;
Five, six,
Pick up sticks;
Seven, eight,
Lay them straight:
Nine, ten,
A big fat hen;
Eleven, twelve,
Dig and delve;
Thirteen, fourteen,
Maids a-courting;
Fifteen, sixteen,
Maids in the kitchen;
Seventeen, eighteen,
Maids a-waiting
Nineteen, twenty,
My plate’s empty


Please click on the link below:


This is a great nursery rhyme to use when learning to count! Use index cards with numbers on them and show them to your child as you say each line. You can also make up your own creative lines that your child will relate to, such as “One two, I hug you! Three four, you hug me more. Five six, mix mix mix (give child a spoon and empty bowl). Seven eight, bang your plate. Nine ten, do it again!”



Nursery Rhymes

Tips for teaching rhyme:

  • When talking to your child about rhyme the best explanation is that ‘words that rhyme sound the same at the end’.
  • When teaching your child anything it is important that it is fun and in short bursts (no longer than 5-10 minutes).
  • Remember that the concept of rhyme is very tricky for young children; don’t worry if they don’t get it straight away!

Fun ideas for teaching rhyme:

  • Read a rhyming story at bedtime and see if your child can pick the words that rhyme (they are usually at the end of sentences). So have a look through the book shelf to see if you have any stories that rhyme, all stories written by Julia Donaldson are very good for finding words that rhyme.
  • Sing nursery rhymes and miss out the second word that rhymes. For example ‘Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great ……….. (fall)’. As they become more confident see if they can think of any other words that might rhyme (wall, fall, tall, ball). If you aren’t very confident with sing nursery rhymes they are easy to find if you type ‘nursery rhymes’ into YouTube.
  • Play rhyming games such as:

*Rhyming hopscotch- Draw a hopscotch with chalk or make one with tape. Put pictures of different animals/objects in each square. Name all of the pictures in the squares and say ‘I can see something that rhymes with ….’ Tell your child to stop on the picture that rhymes. If they find this difficult you can use fewer pictures and gradually add more.

*Rhyming pairs- Give your child a card, put 2 more cards onto the floor making sure that one of them rhymes with a card that they already have. See if they can select the one that rhymes.

*Rhyming soup- Put out two sets of rhyming picture cards, a bowl and a spoon. Say I want the words that rhyme with … Then sing ‘We’re making lots of silly soup, we’re making soup that silly, we’re going to put it in the fridge and make it nice and chilly’. Let your child put an picture card that rhymes with the one that you already put into the bowl. Continue until all of the rhyming cards from one set are in the bowl. To make this more fun you can pretend to mix, smell and taste it.

*Rhyming scavenger hunt- Hide rhyming cards around the garden/a room. See if your child can find them. As they find them say them in a row (cat, mat, hat, bat). To make it harder you could hide two sets of rhyming and see if they can sort them into two groups.

*There are also fun rhyming games that you can buy such as: rhyming bingo, rhyming lotto and rhyming puzzles.