Hey Diddle Diddle: Nursery Rhyme Magic

Nursery rhymes are more than catchy tunes because they can provide a structured framework for a child’s development, offering repetitive patterns that support early literacy skills.

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Counting, recognising rhymes, and storytelling engages students. For instance, in the poem  “One, Two, Buckle My Shoe,” students are practising counting the numbers. They practise rhyming in lines like “Three, Four, Shut the Door.” Students then practise their retelling skills and sequencing a narrative. These activities encourage oral language.

Language Development

Through repetition and practice, students develop language proficiency by expanding their vocabulary, recognising rhymes, understanding sentence structures, and improving pronunciation. This process lays a strong foundation for future literacy by instilling essential language skills from an early age.

Memory and Recall

With each retelling, students in Room 15 gain confidence and fluency in remembering the rhyme. Using actions and rhythm when reciting the poem students develop muscle memory. The more times they hear the rhyme, the more likely they are to remember it.

Sequencing Skills

Retelling a nursery rhyme involves understanding and sequencing events. Through learning to retell a nursery rhyme, Room 15 students learn about the beginning, middle and end of a story. 

Imagination and Creativity

Nursery rhymes spark imagination and creativity. They allow students to visualise characters, settings and actions.

Room 15 created puppets that they used to retell Hey Diddle Diddle.
Students use their imagination to make their poem puppets.
I carefully used the hot glue gun to make my puppet said Elias.

Social and Emotional Learning

Engaging in nursery rhyme retelling promotes social interaction. Whether reciting at home with a family member or with peers in the classroom, students learn to express themselves, in a small  group or with a buddy.

As a class we extended the poems by asking questions about how they think the characters in the poems felt. Here are some of the students' answers.

Q: “How do you think the cow felt jumping over the moon?” 

A: Bailey, “I think the cow was proud he could jump so high.” Isabel, “I think he would be scared and happy because he didn’t break his leg.”

Q: What is your favourite part of the rhyme?” 

A: Conor, “I liked when the dish ran away with the spoon. They were having fun together.” 

Once we have learnt a nursery rhyme they are available for students to use throughout the day to recite with friends and to act out using puppets. Our next steps will be to create more moments for students to have fun using different forms of language and at the same time learn about how language works.

2024 Berger

Debbie Berger

Since embarking on my teaching journey in 2017, I've found profound joy in shaping young minds, guiding them to explore their interests and embrace their curiosity. As a teacher, I've had the privilege of witnessing the spark of discovery ignite within my students, and it's a feeling that never loses its magic.

Balancing my role as an educator with being a wife and mother to two wonderful children has been a rewarding challenge. When I'm not in the classroom, I cherish the moments spent walking my dog, finding solace in the simple rhythm of nature. However, it's the quality time spent with my family that truly rejuvenates me, particularly during our visits to my husband's family in Israel. These journeys have not only enriched our cultural understanding but have also provided us with lasting memories.

My teaching philosophy revolves around nurturing children's innate curiosity. I strongly believe that by encouraging their interests and supporting their questions, we foster a love for learning that transcends the classroom. It's remarkable to witness their eyes light up as they uncover new ideas and concepts.

In essence, teaching isn't just my profession – it's my passion. Guiding children towards realising their potential and fostering their inquisitiveness brings a deep sense of fulfilment. As I continue on this journey, I look forward to many more years of inspiring young minds and creating a positive impact that extends far beyond the classroom walls.


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