Snip, snap crocodile Tr-z -Z

Poems + action and other rhymes for children

The robin

The rose is red

The snake

The swallow

The swing

The tadpole

The wind came out to play one day

The winds they did blow / The squirrel

The woodpecker

The world is full of colour

There are big waves

There was a little robin

Time to rise


Three jolly gentlemen

This is the boat, the golden boat

Tippety, tippety tin

To let

The night will never stay by Eleanor Farjeon

Yellow the bracken


Have fun with this collection; it’s a great way to:

• increase verbal skills, expand vocabulary and horizons

• interact with a partner or larger groups and understand turn taking

• learn to follow or synchronize actions with each other

• learn to start and stop and discover the value of rules

• use children’s natural response to rhythm and rhyme

• sharpen listening skills

• improve memory

• continue the tradition of children’s verse from this and other countries

• be creative, there are many opportunities change words or actions, add verses, use different

voices or change roles

• above all to have lots of tremendous fun – even the most timid child will follow the rhyme

and with the group soon begin to join in.


The rhymes and poems below are part of ‘Away we go!’

compiled and illustrated by Dany Rosevear

Last updated: 8/3/2020 3:05 PM

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To watch and listen to the rhyme click on the title at:

© Dany Rosevear 2012 All rights reserved


You are free to copy, distribute, display and perform these works under the following conditions:

·       you must give the original author credit

·       you may not use this work for commercial purposes

·       for any re-use or distribution, you must make clear to others the licence terms of this work

·       any of these can be waived if you get permission from the copyright holder


Your fair use and other rights are no way affected by the above.



The robin 🔊



A poem by Lawrence Alma-Tadema - 1864-1940 from ‘Songs of Womanhood’ published 1903. It was set to music by Herbert Wiseman for ‘A third 60 songs for little children’ OUP 1960.















When father takes his spade to dig,

Then Robin comes along;

He sits upon a little twig,

And sings a little song.


Or, if the trees are rather far,

He does not stay alone,

But comes up close to where we are,

And bobs upon a stone.




The rose is red 🔊




A song for St. Valentine’s day adapted from the traditional rhyme by Dany Rosevear who also added the tune.















The rose is red,

The violet blue,

The pink it is sweet,

And so are you!


The rose is red, red,

The violet blue, blue,

The pink it is sweet, so sweet,

And so are you!




The snake 🔊



A poem by Karla Kuskin from ‘Dogs & Dragons/Trees & Dreams’ published by Harper & Row, 1980. Lovely and simple with lots of alliteration.

Set to music by Dany Rosevear.

It can also be used as a hand play with hand pointed and arm moving like the snake, don’t forget to stop and smile.
















A snake slipped through the thin green grass,

A silver snake,

I watched it pass;

It moved like a ribbon,

Silent as snow

I think it smiled

As it passed my toe.




The swallow 🔊



A seasonal poem by Christina Rossetti. It can be used as a hand play.

Set to music by Dany Rosevear.


1. Cross hands at the wrist and flap, hand makes wave motion. 2. Shape sun, hands to cheek. 3. Beckon wth hand. 4. Throw hands out, wiggle fingers upwards.














Fly away, fly away, over the sea,

Sun-loving swallow, for summer is done;

Come again, come again, come back to me,

Bringing the summer and bringing the sun.





The swing O



Robert Louis Stevenson wrote many delightful poems for children. Find out more about this Scottish poet at:


The tune is written by Dany Rosevear.































How do you like to go up in a swing,

Up in the air so blue?

Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing

Ever a child can do!


Up in the air and over the wall,

Till I can see so wide,

Rivers and trees and cattle and all

Over the countryside.


Till I look down on the garden green,

Down on the roof so brown-

Up in the air I go flying again,

Up in the air and down!




The tadpole 🔊



The wonder of changing life.

A poem by Elizabeth E. Gould.

Melody by Dany Rosevear.


























Underneath the water-weeds

Small and black, I wriggle,

And life is most surprising!

Wiggle! waggle! wiggle!

There's every now and then a most

Exciting change in me,

I wonder, wiggle! waggle!

What I shall turn out to be!




The wind came out to play one day 🔊



This traditional rhyme has been adapted and set to ‘a familiar tune’ by George Linley from ‘50 Nursery songs and rhymes’ published 1864.

Music by Dany Rosevear. I have a feeling I sang it to a different tune in my early days of teaching but cannot recall it.


1. Make sweeping movements with arms. 2. Flutter fingers. 3. Lift arms then lower them. 4. Sweep arms again.

















The wind came out to play one day.

He swept the clouds out of his way.

He blew the leaves and away they flew.

The trees bent low and their branches did too!

The wind blew the great big ships at sea.

The wind blew my kite away from me.




The Moon’s the North Wind’s cookie 🔊




A lovely song to sing as a lullaby as it conjures up a delightful picture in the mind.

A poem by Vachel Nicholas Lindsay (1879-1931) Music from Burl Ives CD ‘Folk Lullabies’.






























The Moon's the North Wind's cookie.

He bites it, day by day,

Until there's but a rim of scraps

That crumble all away.


The South Wind is a baker.

He kneads clouds in his den,

And bakes a crisp new moon that…greedy





The winds they did blow / The squirrel 🔊



This traditional rhyme has been adapted and set to ‘a familiar tune’ by George Linley from ‘50 Nursery songs and rhymes’ published 1864.

Music arranged by Dany Rosevear. I have a feeling I sang it to a different tune in my early days of teaching but cannot recall it.































The winds they did blow,

The leaves they did wag,

Along came a beggar boy,

And put me in his bag.


He took me up to London town,

A lady did me buy,

She put me in a silver cage,

And hung me up on high;


With apples by the blazing fire,

And nuts for to crack,

Besides a little feather bed,

To rest my little back.




The woodpecker 🔊



Listen out for the innimitable woodpecker and watch for the holes it makes in trees.

A poem by Elizabeth Madox Roberts. Tune by Dany Rosevear.


1. Hold up arm and tap left palm with right forefinger. 2. Hold circled thumb and forefingers to eyes. Make fist with beak into a head. Point to head and neck. 3. Wiggle fingers downwards. Make hands ‘streak’. 4. Roll arms. Snuggle fist to arm ‘pole’.















The woodpecker pecked out a little round hole,

And made him a house in the telephone pole.


One day as I watched he poked out his head,

He had on a hood and a collar of red.


When the streams of rain pour out of the sky,

And the flashes of lightening go streaking by


And the big, big wheels of thunder roll,

He can snuggle back in his telephone pole!




The world is full of colour 🔊



An Autumn poem by Adeline White.

Music by Dany Rosevear.













The world is full of colour!

'Tis Autumn once again

And leaves of gold and crimson

Are lying in the lane.


There are brown and yellow acorns,

Berries and scarlet haws,

Amber gorse and heather

Purple across the moors!


Green apples in the orchard,

Flushed by a glowing sun;

Mellow pears and brambles

Where coloured pheasants run!


Yellow, blue and orange,

Russet, rose and red —

A gaily-coloured pageant —

An Autumn flower bed.


Beauty of light and shadow,

Glory of wheat and rye,

Colour of shining water

Under a sunset sky!





There are big waves 🔊



A poem by the wonderful children’s poet Eleanor Farjeon.

Music by Dany Rosevear.


Make hands move like different kinds of waves and voice respond to the sound of the different waves.

















There are big waves and little waves,

Green waves and blue,

Waves you can jump over,

Waves you dive through.


Waves that rise up

Like a great water wall,

Waves that swell softly

And don't break at all.


Waves that can whisper,

Waves that can roar,

And tiny waves that run at you

Running on the shore.





There was a little robin 🔊



A poem by Wilhelmina Seegmuller.

Music by Dany Rosevear.























There was a little robin

Sat singing in a tree;

From early morn till dark he sang—

"The world was made for me."



Thistledown 🔊



How lovely is this?! A poem by Patience Strong from  the ‘Nursery versery’ collection published 1948. Music by Dany Rosevear.




















Thistledown, thistledown,

Where are you going,

Borne on the breath of the sweet summer’s breeze?

Floating along with the wind gently blowing,

Out of the garden and over the trees.






Three jolly gentlemen O



A poem by Walter de la Mare presumably about the hunting fraternity.

Melody by Dany Rosevear.
























Three jolly gentlemen in coats of red,

Rode their horses up to bed.

Three jolly gentlemen snored till morn,

While their horses chomped on the golden corn.

Three jolly gentlemen at break of day,

Came clitter-clatter down the stairs and galloped away.





This is the boat, the golden boat



A traditional rhyme that conjures up brilliant images. Sometimes the little men are ‘fairy’ or ‘ferry’ men.

The last four lines are written by Mary Thienes Schunemann in ‘Sing a song with baby’.


Line 1. Cup hands together and make them sway 2. Move hands like the waves 3. Interlace fingers with palms up 4. Lower and raise fingers 5. Show ten fingers 6. Fingers run 7. Interlace fingers with palms up 8. Lower and raise fingers 9. Cup hands together and make them sway 10. Move hands like the waves 11. Make a circle with thumbs and forefingers 12. Wiggle fingers 13. Cup hands together and make them move forward 14. Lift hands and cross them on the heart 15. Move hands like the waves


This is the boat, the golden boat,

That sails on the silvery sea.

These are the oars of ivory white,

That lift and dip, that lift and dip.

Here are the ten little sailor men,

Running along, running along,

To take the oars of ivory white

That lift and dip, that lift and dip,

That move the boat, the golden boat,

Over the silvery sea.


Here is the moon so big and round,

That shines on the boat

That is homeward bound;

Back to the harbour safe and sound,

From its sail on the silvery sea.



Time to rise 🔊



A poem by Robert Louis Stevenson.


1. With clenched fist open and close thumb and forefinger. 2. Same hand jumps on outstretched thumb of the other hand. 3. Drop hand to right. 4. Shake finger.













A birdie with a yellow bill

Hopped upon my window sill,

Cocked his shining eye and said:

"Ain't you 'shamed, you sleepy-head!"




Tippety, tippety tin



An old West Somerset rhyme once recited in homes locally after eating pancakes. A little research suggests this song was known more widely in the West country including Cornwall and Exmoor in Devon with associated rituals.


Tippety, tippety

Tippety, tippety tin,

Give me a pancake

And I will come in.

Tippety, tippety

Tippety, tippety toe,

Give me a pancake

And then I will go.





To let 🔊



A Spring poem about the wonders of new life.

Words by D. Newey-Johnson.

Melody by Dany Rosevear.



















Two little beaks went tap, tap, tap!

Two little shells went crack, crack, crack!

Two fluffy chicks peeped out, and oh,

They liked the looks of the big world so.

They left their houses without a fret,

And two little shells are now to let!




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