Rhymes for a Reason

Start singing! Repetition of words is the first step toward recognizing patterns in math.



Rhymes for a Reason

What to do:
Sing or chant these songs to your baby — each one has accompanying movements too.

  1. Roll over, roll over
    Lay your baby on his back and gently roll him from side to side as you sing or chant these words. An older baby may enjoy acting out the song with several stuffed animals or dolls.

    There were [three] on the bed
    And [baby's name] said,
    "Roll over, roll over."
    [Gently roll your baby from side to side.]
    So they all rolled over and
    one fell out.
    [Repeat the gentle rolling motion.]
    There were [two] on the bed
    And [baby's name] said,
    "Roll over, roll over."
    So they all rolled over
    and one fell out.
    There was one on the bed
    And no one said, "Roll
    over, roll over."

  2. I caught a fish alive
    Older babies will enjoy this song that introduces numbers and uses entertaining hand motions. For added fun, make fish shapes from construction paper and use them to play out the actions.

    One, two, three, four, five
    [Hold hand in a fist, bringing up one finger at a time as you count to five.]
    I caught a fish alive.
    [Grab a pretend fish.]
    Six, seven, eight, nine, ten
    [Continue holding up fingers as you count.]
    I threw it back again!
    [Pretend to throw the fish back into the sea.]
    Why did I let it go?
    [Hold hands up shoulder height to show inquiry.]
    Because it bit my finger so!
    Which finger did it bite?
    The little pinky on the right. [Hold up pinky on the right.]
    Mmm! All better!
    [Kiss baby's pinky.]
  3. Open shut them
    Sit your baby facing you and recite these words while doing the motions with your hands. You can clap your hands or take your child's hands in yours. During the second section of the chant, walk your fingers up your baby's tummy to his chin. Finally, open your mouth wide, put your fingers next to your mouth, and then quickly hide your hands behind your back.

    Open, shut them
    Open, shut them
    Give a little clap, clap, clap
    Open, shut them
    Open, shut them
    Place them on your
    lap, lap, lap
    Creep them, crawl them
    Creep them, crawl them
    Right up to your chin, chin,
    Open wide your little mouth
    But . . . do not let them in!
Gross Motor Skills
Math Activities
Number Sequencing
Age 3
Age 2
Age 1
Counting and Numbers
Songs and Rhymes
Motor Skills
First Words
Early Math