Nursery Rhymes

A database of our favourite nursery rhymes at Bach to Baby concerts.

Bach to Baby is a classical concert series specifically designed for baby and family to enjoy together. Join us to experience exhilarating music, outstanding performers, and the joy of sharing music with the whole family through classical music and requests of your favourite classic nursery rhymes


Nursery Rhymes

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Nursery Rhymes are the foundations of language development.  At Bach to Baby concerts, we love singing together around the piano, and taking requests from the audience. We've included some of our favourite songs here.  As London is a very international city, these lyrics are here to help mums like me who grew up abroad and are raising our children in London. This is also intended as a resource for those of us who grew up with the songs, and would like to pass on to our children.

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click on the title below to get to the lyrics - 

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A Sailor went to Sea Sea Sea

A sailor went to sea, sea, sea.
To see what he could see, see, see.
But all that he could see, see, see.
Was the bottom of the deep blue sea, sea, sea.

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Baa Baa Black Sheep

Baa Baa Black sheep have you any wool
Yes Sir, Yes Sir, three bags full
One for the master, and one for the dame
One for the little boy who lives down the lane.

Thank you says the master, Thank you says the dame
Thank you says the little boy who lives down the lane.

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Bobby Shaftoe

Bobby Shaftoe went to sea,
Silver buckles on his knee.
He'll come back and marry me,
Pretty Bobby Shaftoe.

Bobby Shaftoe's fine and fair,
Combing down his auburn hair.
He's my friend for evermore.
Pretty Bobby Shaftoe. 

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Dingle Dangle Scarecrow

When all the cows were sleeping
And the sun had gone to bed
Up jumped the scarecrow
And this is what he said! 

I'm a dingle, dangle scarecrow
With a flippy floppy hat
I can shake my hands like this
And shake my feet like that 

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Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Head, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
Head, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
And eyes and ears and mouth and nose
Head, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
(Repeat, getting faster each time) 

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Hey Diddle Diddle

Hey diddle diddle,
The Cat and the fiddle,
The Cow jumped over the moon.
The little Dog laughed,
To see such fun,
and the Dish ran away with the Spoon.

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Hickory Dickory Dock

Hickory dickory dock,
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck one,
The mouse ran down,
Hickory dickory dock. 

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Hokey Pokey

You put your right foot in,
You put your right foot out,
You put your right foot in
And you shake it all about.
You do the Hokey Pokey
And you turn yourself around,
That's what it's all about.

Verse 2: left foot

Verse 3: right hand

Verse 4: left hand

Verse 5: right shoulder

Verse 6: left shoulder

Verse 7: right hip

Verse 8: left hip

Verse 9: whole self

That's what it's all about! 

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Hot Cross Buns

Hot cross buns!
Hot cross buns!
One a penny, two a penny,

Hot cross buns!
Hot cross buns!
Hot cross buns!
If you have no daughters,
Give them to your sons!

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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. 

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Hush, Little Baby

Hush, little baby, don't say a word,
Papa's gonna buy you a mockingbird.

And if that mockingbird don't sing,
Papa's gonna buy you a diamond ring.

And if that diamond ring turn brass,
Papa's gonna buy you a looking glass.

And if that looking glass gets broke,
Papa's gonna buy you a billy goat.

And if that billy goat don't pull,
Papa's gonna buy you a cart and bull.

And if that cart and bull turn over,
Papa's gonna buy you a dog named Rover.

And if that dog named Rover won't bark.
Papa's gonna to buy you and horse and cart.

And if that horse and cart fall down,
Well you'll still be the sweetest little baby in town. 

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If You're Happy and You Know It

If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.
If you're happy and you know it and you really want to show it.
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands.

Verse 2: stomp your feet

Verse 3: make up your own

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I’m a Little Tea Pot

I’m a little tea pot, short and stout;
Here is my handle, {put one hand on hip}
Here is my spout. {put other hand extended like a spout}
When I get the steam up,
Hear me shout,
Tip me up and pour me out. {tip body to the side of the hand shaped like a spout}

I'm a little teapot, short and stout
Here is my handle, {put one hand on hip}
Here is my spout  {put other hand extended like a spout}
When the kettle's boiling, Hear me shout,
Tip me up and pour me out . {tip body to the side of the hand shaped like a spout}

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Incy Wincy Spider

Incy Wincy Spider climbed up the water spout {'Climb' up arm or thumbs to index fingers}
Down came the rain {Wiggle fingers down from head to waist}
and washed poor Incy out {Throw arms to sides}
Out came the sunshine and dried up all the rain {Raise hands above head, make circle for sun}
So Incy Wincy Spider climbed up the spout again {'Climb'up arm or thumbs to index fingers} 

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Jack be nimble

Jack be nimble
Jack be quick
Jack jump over
The candlestick.

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Lavender's Blue (Dilly Dilly) 

Lavender's blue dilly, dilly,
Lavender's green;
When I am king, dilly, dilly,
You shall be Queen.

Who told you so, dilly dilly,
Who told you so?
'Twas my own heart, dilly dilly,
That told me so.

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Little Jack Horner

Little Jack Horner sat in a corner,
Eating a Christmas pie.
He put in his thumb and pulled out a plum,
And said "What a good boy am I!" 

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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!  

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London Bridge

London Bridge is falling down,
Falling down, Falling down.
London Bridge is falling down,
My fair lady.

Build it up with bricks and stones
Bricks and stones, bricks and stones,
Build it up with bricks and stones,
My fair lady. 

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London's Burning

London's burning, London's burning.
Fetch the engines, fetch the engines.
Fire fire, Fire Fire!
Pour on water, pour on water.

London's burning, London's burning.
Fetch the engines, fetch the engines.
Fire fire, Fire Fire!
Pour on water, pour on water.
Pour on water, pour on water.
Pour on water, pour on water. 

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Mary Had a Little Lamb

Mary had a little lamb its fleece was white as snow;
And everywhere that Mary went, the lamb was sure to go.

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Mary Mary Quite Contrary

Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockleshells
And pretty maids all in a row. 

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Michael Finnegan

There was an old man named Michael Finnegan.
He grew whiskers on his chin-negan.
The wind came up and blew them in again.
Poor old Michael Finnegan - begin again!

There was an old man named Michael Finnegan.
He fell down and broke his shin-negan.
Folks said, "Mike, you'll never swim again."
Poor old Michael Finnegan - begin again!

There was an old man named Michael Finnegan.
He grew fat and then grew thin again...
Thinner than a safety pin-negan.
Poor old Michael Finnegan - begin again! 

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Miss Polly Had a Dolly

Miss Polly had a dolly who was sick, sick, sick.
So she phoned for the doctor to be quick, quick, quick.
The doctor came with his bag and hat,
And knocked at the door with a rat tat tat.

He looked at the dolly and shook his head,
And said "Miss Polly put her straight to bed."
He wrote a pad for a pill, pill, pill.
I'll be back in the morning with my bill, bill, bill. 

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Old MacDonald had a farm

Old MacDonald had a farm, E I E I O,
And on his farm he had a cow, E I E I O.
With a moo moo here and a moo moo there,
Here a moo, there a moo, ev'rywhere a moo moo.
Old MacDonald had a farm, E I E I O.

Substitute Cow with: 
Pig  - oink oink
Geese – honk honk
Horse -  Neigh neigh
Mule/Donkey – Hee Haw 
Make up your own!  

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Once I Caught a Fish Alive

One, two, three, four, five,
Once I caught a fish alive,
Six, seven, eight, nine, ten,
Then I let go again.

Why did you let it go?
Because it bit my finger so.
Which finger did it bite?
This little finger on the right.

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Oranges and Lemons

"Oranges and lemons",
say the bells of St. Clement's

"You owe me five farthings",
say the bells of St. Martin's

"When will you pay me?",
ask the bells of Old Bailey "

When I grow rich",
say the bells of Shoreditch

"When will that be?",
ask the bells of Stepney

"I do not know",
says the great bell of Bow

Here comes a candle
to light you to bed

And here comes a chopper
to chop off your head!

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Polly Put The Kettle On

Polly, put the kettle on, (x3)
We'll all have tea.

Sukey, take it off again, (x3)
They've all gone away.

Blow the fire and make the toast,
Put the muffins on to roast,
Blow the fire and make the toast,
We'll all have tea. 

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Pop!, Goes The Weasel

All around the cobbler's bench,
The monkey chased the weasel.

The monkey thought't was all in fun,
Pop! goes the weasel.

A penny for a spool of thread,
A penny for a needle.

That's the way the money goes,
Pop! goes the weasel. 

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Row Row Row Your Boat

Row, row, row your boat
Gently down the stream
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily
Life is but a dream.

Row Row Row your boat
Gently down the river
and if you see a polar bear
don't forget to shiver {shaking their legs a bit, or hold to yourself tight and shiver}

Row Row Row your boat
Gently to the shore
and if you see a lion
don't forget to roar {then actually roar visibly}

Row Row Row your boat
Gently down the shore
and if you see a crocodile
don't forget to scream {then actually scream a bit - with a smile, of course}

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She'll be comin' 'round the mountain

She'll be comin' 'round the mountain
When she comes,
(Yee - har!).
She'll be comin' 'round the mountain
When she comes,
(Yee - har!).
She'll be comin' 'round the mountain,
She'll be comin' 'round the mountain,
She'll be comin' 'round the mountain,
When she comes.
(Yee - har!)

Singin' eye eye yippee yippee eye,
Singin' eye eye yippee yippee eye, 
eye eye eye eye
Singin' eye eye yippee yippee eye eye
yippee yippee eye eye
yippee yippee eye.

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Sing A Song of Sixpence

Sing a song of sixpence,
A pocket full of rye;
Four and twenty blackbirds
Baked in a pie.
When the pie was opened,
They all began to sing.
Now, wasn't that a dainty dish
To set before the King?

The King was in his countinghouse,
Counting out his money;
The Queen was in the parlor
Eating bread and honey.
The maid was in the garden,
Hanging out the clothes.
Along there came a big black bird
And snipped off her nose! 

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The Big Ship Sails

The big ship sails,
On the alley, alley oh.
The alley, alley oh.
The big ship sails,
On the alley, alley oh.
On the last day of December.

The captain says,
"It will never never do,
Never never do,
Never never do."
The captain says,
"It will never never do",
On the last day of December.

The big ship sank,
To the bottom of the sea,
The bottom of the sea,
The bottom of the sea.
The big ship sank,
To the bottom of the sea,
On the last day of December.

We all dip our hands,
In the deep blue sea,
The deep blue sea,
The deep blue sea.
We all dip our hands,
In the deep blue sea,
On the last day of December.

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The Grand Old Duke of York

The Grand old Duke of York,
He had ten thousand men,
He marched them up to the top of the hill,
And he marched them down again.

When they were up, they were up,
And when they were down, they were down,
And when they were only halfway up,
They were neither up nor down.

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The Muffin Man

Oh do you know the muffin man,
The muffin man, the muffin man?
Oh do you know the muffin man,
That lives in Drury Lane?

Yes I know the muffin man,
The muffin man, the muffin man.
Yes I know the muffin man,
That lives in Drury Lane. 

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The Rainbow Song (I Can Sing a Rainbow) 

Red and yellow and 
Pink and Green 
Purple and orange and blue 

I can sing a rainbow 
Sing a rainbow 
Sing a rainbow too 

Listen with your eyes 
Listen with your ears 
And sing everything you see 

I can sing a rainbow 
Sing a rainbow 
Sing along with me

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Three Blind Mice

Three blind mice,
Three blind mice,

See how they run!
See how they run!

They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails,
With a carving knife.

Did you ever see such a thing in your life,
As three blind mice?

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Three Little Monkeys

Three little monkeys jumping on the bed,
One fell off and bumped his head.
Mama called the Doctor and the Doctor said,
"No more monkeys jumping on the bed!"

Two little monkeys jumping on the bed,
One fell off and bumped her head.
Papa called the Doctor and the Doctor said,
"No more monkeys jumping on the bed!"

One little monkey jumping on the bed,
He fell off and bumped his head.
Mama called the Doctor and the Doctor said,
"Put those monkeys straight to bed!" 

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Tommy Thumb, Tommy Thumb
(this is very popular with baby massage classes, to be performed either on the toes/fingers of babies.)

Tommy Thumb, Tommy Thumb,
Where are you?
Here I am, here I am,
How do you do?

Peter Pointer, Peter Pointer,
Where are you?
Here I am, here I am,
How do you do?

Toby Tall, Toby Tall
Where are you?
Here I am, here I am,
How do you do?

Ruby Ring, Ruby Ring,
Where are you?
Here I am, here I am,
How do you do?

Baby small, Baby Small,
Where are you?
Here I am, here I am,
How do you do?

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Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are!
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.
Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are!

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The Wheels on the Bus

The wheels on the bus go round and round,
round and round, round and round
The wheels on the bus go round and round
All day long
(Roll hands over each other)

The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish
Swish, swish, swish, swish, swish, swish
The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish
All day long.
(Put arms together in front of you and 'swish' like wind-shield wipers)

The door on the bus goes open and shut
Open and shut, open and shut
The door on the bus goes open and shut
All day long.
(Cover eyes with hands on 'shut' and uncover them on 'open')

The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep
Beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep
The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep
All day long.
(Pretend to honk horn, or push your nose)

The money on the bus goes clink, clink, clink,
All day long.
(Pretend to put money in cash box on bus)

The baby on the bus says "wah, wah, wah!"
All day long.
(Fisted hands in front of eyes and rub them like baby crying)

The people on the bus say "shh, shh, shh,"
All day long.
(Put pointer finger to mouth to 'shhh')

The mommy on the bus says "I love you",
All day long.
(Point to self on 'I', right hand over heart on 'love', and point to other on 'you')

even better- make up your own verses!

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Yankee Doodle

Yankee Doodle went to town
A-riding on a pony
Stuck a feather in his cap
And called it macaroni.
Yankee Doodle, keep it up
Yankee Doodle dandy
Mind the music and the step
And with the girls be handy.a 

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You Are My Sunshine

You Are My Sunshine
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away. 

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French Nursery Rhymes

Frére Jacques

Frére Jacques,
Frére Jacques,
Dormez vous?
Dormez vous?
Sonnez les matines,
Sonnez les matines.
Ding Ding Dong,
Ding Ding Dong.

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Alouette, Gentille Alouette

Alouette, gentille Alouette
Alouette je te plumerai
Alouette, gentille Alouette
Alouette je te plumerai
Je te plumerai la tête 
Je te plumerai la tête 
Et la tête, et la tête 
Alouette, Alouette
O-o-o-o-oh
Alouette, gentille Alouette
Alouette je te plumerai .

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German Nursery Rhymes

 

Brahms Lullaby (Lullaby and Good Night

Lullaby and good night, with roses bedight
With lilies o'er spread is baby's wee bed
Lay thee down now and rest, may thy slumber be blessed
Lay thee down now and rest, may thy slumber be blessed
Lullaby and good night, thy mother's delight
Bright angels beside my darling abide
They will guard thee at rest, thou shalt wake on my breast
They will guard thee at rest, thou shalt wake on my breast.

(original German)
Guten Abend, gute Nacht, Mit Rosen bedacht,
Mit Naeglein besteckt, schlupf unter die Deck'
Morgen frueh, wenn Gott will, wirst du wieder geweckt
Morgen frueh, wenn Gott will, wirst du wieder geweckt
Guten Abend, gute Nacht, Von Englein bewacht
Die zeigen im Traum, dir Christkindleins Baum
Schlaf nun selig und suess, Schau im Traum's Paradies
Schlaf nun selig und suess, Schau im Traum's Paradies.

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