Tuesday 3 August 2021

Working with nursery rhymes


Cartoon, Rhyme, Nursery, Children

Take a good look at children’s nursery rhymes.  Research them a little. Many of them have a political meaning or are a commentary on society or something that happened in history.  Write an article about a nursery rhyme. Write the story behind it. Or use a line from it as a title to inspire a poem, story or script.    

Here are a few starters:


Baa Baa Blacksheep

Who was the master and who was the dame? And the little boy who cried down the lane? Why was the sheep black, anyway? Who is the back sheep in the family?


Hickory Dickory Dock

Which mouse and which clock? 


One Two, Buckle My Shoe

A counting rhyme. Could you make up a new one? There is a theory that this is to do with lacemaking. Can you base a story around a group of people working together making lace? What do they talk about? Are they competitive? What happens to the lace when it is made?


London Bridge is Falling Down

Can you retell this as a story? Does wood and clay work? Do iron and steel work better? What happens when the bridge is built from silver and gold? Or is this a metaphor for money being spent on it?


Humpty Dumpty

Good egg or bad egg? Why can’t all of the king’s horses and all of the king’s men put him back together again? Is this a symbol for a failing economy?


Polly Put the Kettle On

How disappointing that the tea party never happens.  Can you write the story of a failed social occasion?


Jack and Jill

Is there a feminist agenda here? Jack goes home and is made a fuss of.  Jill just has to get on with it.


Little Miss Muffet

Who is she and why is she so scared of spiders?


Dark sides

This vide discusses some of the darker sides of nursery rhymes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzUO_AohGLc  . However, be aware; this is just an opinion. You could even make up your own interpretation of nursery rhymes. You can find some more interpretations here: https://www.education.com/magazine/article/hidden_history_of_nursery_rhymes/               



Can you put several of the characters together and see what happens?


Do it yourself?

Nursery rhymes have strong rhymes and a lot of repetition.  Can you make up a new one? 

Image by Vicki Hamilton from Pixabay

No comments:

Post a Comment