Un, deux, trois

À la ronde jolie

Passez pompons



Un kilomètre à pied

Un petit bonhomme

Violette à bicyclette



Last updated: 10/2/2018 10:38 AM


The songs below are part ofHop-là!’ The French collection

compiled, adapted, translated and illustrated by Dany Rosevear


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To listen to music from these songs click on O 🔊

To watch the author sing a song click on the title at:


© Dany Rosevear 2008 All rights reserved


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

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



À la ronde jolie O



An ‘all fall down’ game for the very youngest.


Hold hands in a circle.

















À la ronde, jolie ronde,

Pour plaire à tout le monde,

Les grands et les petits se font:

Petit, tout petit, minuscule.

Un, deux, trois,

Grandissez vite!!!

Round in circles, pretty circles,

We love to turn in circles,

The old ones and the young they go:

So small, very small, miniscule.

One, two, three,

Quick! Make yourself big!!!

Skip clockwise in a circle.



Drop hands and curl up small, very small then teeny tiny.

All count then jump up quickly making bodies as big as possible.




















Passez pompons O


Similar to ‘Passe, passe, passera’ this is another ‘farandole’ or conga dance. Watch children playing it as a circle game at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apT0mhiUObs  Here it is played like ‘Oranges and lemons’.


Two players choose a colour, a bird or a flower. They then make an arched doorway holding hands aloft. The other players pass under in time to the rhythm of the song. On ‘Le clef’ the door closes imprisoning a child inside. The captive chooses a colour then stands on that side of the doorway. At the end of the game the two sides try to draw the other into their own territory. The longest line is likely to prove the strongest!




















Passez pompons, les carillons,

Les portes sont ouvertes.

Passez pompons, les carillons,

Les portes sont fermées.

Passez pompons, les carillons,

Les porte sont ouvertes.

Passez pompons, les carillons,

Les portes sont fermées.

Pass on ping ping, the bells do ring,

The doors they now are open.

Pass on ping ping, the bells do ring,

The doors are closing shut.




Un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq, six, sept, huit, neuf, dix….

Le clef!      

One, two, three……nine, ten...      The key!

Sing gently the first time as children pass through the doorway in line.


Change rhythm and repeat in a livelier and faster manner.












Count steadily holding hands over each head as they pass through. Play as above.




Pimpanicaille O


Pronounced ‘Pam - pon - ee - ky’. Here is another opportunity to practice names of numbers in French. This song was recorded by the famous children’s author la Comptesse de Segur (1799-1874).


Listen at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyeD31wbwIQ


Choose a child, ‘Pimpanicaille’, to stand in the centre of the circle.
















Le roi des papillons,

En se faisent la barbe,

Se coupa le menton.

Un, deux, trois, de bois,

Quatre, cinq, six, de buis,

Sept, huit, neuf, de boeuf,

Dix, onze, douze, de bouse,

Va-t-en à Toulouse!


The king of butterflies,

Wounded his poor chin,

As he trimmed his beard.

One, two, three for trees (timber),

Four, five, six for sticks (boxwood),

S’ven, eight, nine for swine (beef),

Ten, eleven, twelve we delve (cow pat),

And off to Toulouse!

The children join hands and circle steadily around ‘Pimpanicaille’.


The circle stops as ‘Pimpanicaille’ counts round the ring. ‘Douze’ becomes the new king of butterflies.


On the words ‘Va-t-en-Toulouse’ all sink to the ground ready to jump up and start all over again with the new ‘Pimpanicaille’ in the centre.











Sauterelle O


Grasshopper lives on the edge of the field, jump with him while learning the French numbers names.


















Sauterelle au bord des champs,

Saute avec tes ailes vertes!

As-tu des petits enfants?

J’en ai trios, quatre, cinq, six, sept.

Sauterelle au bord des champs,

Ils ont tous des ailes vertes!

Huit, neuf, dix, onze, douze,

En pension chez le grillon!

Grasshopper in field so free,

Jump up high with green wings glistening!

Have you children, please tell me?

I have three, four, five, six, sev’n.

Grasshoppers in field so free,

Watch them jump with green wings


Eight, nine, ten, ‘leven, twelve,

They all live at the cricket’s house!

Individually or in pairs jump around the room.


Stop and use fingers to show each number.

Continue jumping.


Stop and use fingers to show each number.

Link arms and skip round.













Un kilomètre à pied O


This vigorous marching and counting song is great for movement outside, especially when on a countryside walk. Learn the numbers to ten, twenty or even more!


Keep it simple for younger children and omit the second part:  ‘Encore…’ etc. as quick tongues are required. Older children can make up their own clapping pattern using different parts of the body. See Unit 2 Jeux et chansons QCA 2007 for further activities linked to this song.


Listen to Madame Jackson’s Chicago French class sing this song: http://people.ucls.uchicago.edu/~djackso/3rdGrade/unkilometre.htm














Un kilomètre à pied,

Ça use, ça use,

Un kilomètre à pied,

Ça use les souliers!

One kilometre on foot,

We’re so tired, we’re so tired,

One kilometre on foot,

Our poor shoes are worn out!


Encore un ki-ki, un ki-lo-lo, un kilométre,

Encore un ki-ki, un ki-lo-lo-métre à marcher!

Again a ki-ki, a ki-lo-lo, a kilometre,

Again a ki-ki, a ki-lo-lo-metre more to walk!



Deux kilomètres à pied, …etc.

Two kilometres on foot,….etc.



Trois kilomètres à pied, …etc.

Three kilometres on foot,….etc.

Play in a variety of ways depending on the age of your children:

·       march freely round the room weaving in and out of each other.

·       march in pairs side by side

·       march in lines of four or six, weaving in and out of other lines. At the end of each verse the leader joins the tail to leave a new head of line.


Stand still opposite partner, clap own hands, partners right, own hands, partner’s left. Continue this sequence.


Call out each number before setting off on pathway and continuing game.









Un petit bonhomme O


A little man goes for a walk in the woods and catches a cold. Others join him with the same consequence. Learn the French names of numbers in this simple song.

Younger children might just stroll around the room jumping three times on ‘Atchoum!’













Un petit bonhomme s’en allait au bois,

En revenant il faisait trois fois:

Atchoum! Atchoum! Atchoum!

A young man went off to the woods of pine,

On his way back he sneezed loud three times:

Atchoo! Atchoo! Atchoo!


Deux petits bonhommes s’en allaient au bois,

Two men went off to the woods of pine.

On their way back they sneezed loud etc.


Trois petits etc.


Walk one behind the other in three circles. In the centre a child walks the other way. On ‘Atchoum!’ all jump three times and on the last jump turn to face in the opposite direction. The child in the centre grabs the nearest child to follow him.

Continue as above, each time a new child is brought in to join those in the ring.





































Violette à bicyclette O


Mime an imaginary bike ride in this simple counting song. Stop between each verse with the command ‘Tournez à droite’, ‘Tournez à gauche’ or ‘Arrête!’

Replace ‘Violette’ with a child’s name and ‘bicyclette’ with ‘taxi’ or ‘autobus’ etc.


Listen at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvgbGHaI9Fw












Un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq, six, sept,

Violette, Violette.

Un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq, six, sept,

Violette à bicyclette!

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,

Violette, Violette.

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,

On her bike rides Violette!

Clap each number while setting off on a pathway miming riding a bike.





















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