Friday, December 6, 2013

FIngerplay Fun Friday: The Wheels On the Train!

There's something about the holiday season and trains.  They seem to go hand-in-hand.  Here's a fun update to the familiar "The Wheels On the Bus": The Wheels On the Train

The Wheels On the Train

The wheels on the train go clickety-clack,
Clickety-clack, clickety-clack.
The wheels on the train go clickety-clack,
All along the track!

The station master shouts "All aboard!"
"All aboard!" "All aboard!"
The station master shouts "All aboard!"
All along the track!

The conductor says "Tickets please!"
"Tickets please!" "Tickets please!"
The conductor says "Tickets please!"
All along the track!

The whistle on the train goes "Choo-choo!"
"Choo-choo!" "Choo-choo!"
The whistle on the train goes "Choo-choo!"
All along the tracks!

The people on the train go bumpity-bump,
Bumpity-bump, bumpity-bump.
The people on the train go bumpity-bump,
All along the track!

The kids on the train say "Are we there yet?"
"Are we there yet?" "Are we there yet?"
The kids on the train say "Are we there yet?"
All along the track!

The brakeman on the train says "Slow 'er down!"
"Slow 'er down!" "Slow 'er down!"
The brakeman on the train says "Slow 'er down!"
All along the track!


"The Wheels On the Bus" is a massively popular children's song.  It has been regularly sung in nurseries and classrooms for the last 50 years or more.  This general familiarity makes it easy for kids to get on board with "The Wheels On the Train."

When we take familiar songs and add new verses or update using a variant theme we are exposing kids to new vocabulary.  In this particular case, we are introducing kids to many of the people who are involved with railroads:

 STATION MASTER

photo by Klearchos Kapoutsis

CONDUCTOR

photo by U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

BRAKEMAN

photo by Herbert A. French
Each person has a very particular job to help make sure the train runs smoothly and efficiently.  When you share rhymes like this, you can take a moment to have a conversation with your child about how things in the real world work.  You can talk about how a Station Master makes sure the train station runs correctly, how the Conductor makes sure the train runs correctly and the Brakeman helps slow down the train when it stops.  Your child will be building vocabulary in the process.  This, in turn, will help your child recognize words when they begin reading!

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