Animals often make appearances in our little one’s poems and stories. They are often personified and given supernatural powers. The Goosey Goosey Gander rhyme dates back to the 18th century and is a fun English nursery rhyme as it promotes creative thinking in your child. The rhyme has a lot of versions, with some versions including extra lines or taking some off. The song was first recorded in 1784 by Gammer Gurton and is believed it was used as propaganda by the Protestants against the Catholic Church. Children love this rhyme as they can learn new words and imagine it too!
Goosey Goosey Gander Lyrics In English
The lyrics of the Goosey Goosey Gander poem are below:
Goosey goosey gander,
Whither shall I wander?
Upstairs and downstairs
And in my lady’s chamber.
There I met an old man
Who wouldn’t say his prayers,
So I took him by his left leg
And threw him down the stair.
“Goosey, Goosey Gander” Original Version
The original lyrics from 1784:
Goose-a goose-a gander,
Where shall I wander?
Up stairs and down stairs,
In my lady’s chamber;
There you’ll find a cup of sack
And a race of ginger.
“Goosey, Goosey Gander” Another Version
Another version of the song:
The stairs went crack,
He nearly broke his back.
And all the little ducks went,
‘Quack, quack, quack!
What Will Your Child Learn From Goosey Goosey Gander?
You can teach your child the endless possibilities of life and the historical reference of the poem. You can introduce your child to English history and the troubles of Protestants and the Catholic church. Although we’re in a different world now, it is important that we study and reflect on our past as it plays an important role in how our present has been shaped. You can teach your child the importance of history and get them interested. Once your child develops an interest in history, you can introduce them to more topics and even buy them children’s illustrated history books.
The Theme Of Goosey Goosey Gander
In the poem, we are introduced to a male goose. The narrator wonders where they should wander around. He talks about wandering upstairs, downstairs, and then in his lady’s chamber. He meets an old man there who does not say his prayers. He then takes the man by his left leg and throws him down the stairs.
Some believe that the rhyme refers to Catholic priests hiding in priest holes when they faced persecutions under the Protestant Kings and Queens. “Left leg” was a slang term for Catholics during the reign of Edward VI. The poem also references the banning of Latin prayers and other things that indicate that the poem was referencing the persecution of Catholic priests in the reign of Protestant monarchs.
The other versions are simplified and do not seem to have a dark historical context.
Rhyming Scheme/Pattern Of Goosey Goosey Gander
The rhyming scheme of the poem is AABACDEF. There is no pattern in the poem. It seems to be written in free verse.
Words That Your Child Will Learn From Goosey Goosey Gander
Words that your child will learn from Goosey Goosey Gander are:
Nouns: Gander, upstairs, downstairs, chamber, stair
Verbs: Gander, wander, threw, took
Adverbs: Whither, upstairs, downstairs
You can teach your child the words and how one word can behave as a noun, adverb and even an adjective.
If your child is younger, you can teach them that the ducks go quack quack quack!
- You can recite the poem as you enact it with your child. You can make a fun game where you chase each other and try to grab the other’s left leg. Take turns being the chaser but don’t forget to recite the poem as you do!
- While bathing your child, you can put rubber geese or ducks in along with them and let them play with the rubber figures. You can recite the poem and encourage them to enact it with the figures as you do. This will increase their imagination and grasping capabilities.
1. Is the historical context of the poem Goosey Goosey Gander too dark for my child?
Some parents may think that the poem’s historical context is too dark for them to teach their children. However, parents can eliminate the bad details of the historical context and let their child’s curiosity drive them to learn more about it. After all, history is important to know, but one must be responsible for what their child is exposed to.
2. Can I dance with my child to the poem Goosey Goosey Gander?
You can surely come up with a dance for your child. It’ll be a fun activity for you and your child to set a dance together. Recite the poem as you do, and don’t forget to have fun!