Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Elephants: Gentle Giants Among Us II

From The Folk-Tales of Bengal, 1911
Illustration by Warwick Goble

“Nature’s great masterpiece, an elephant; the only harmless great thing.” – John Dunne

Below are some of the fingerplays, songs and story stretchers I use during a storytelling lapsit program for toddlers. Some of these are found on the web with no attribution. Wherever I could find an author, I have noted the link and attribution. Have fun with the elephants!


One Little Elephant

One elephant went out to play, (hold up one finger)
Over the hills and far away. (wave finger like it is going over the hills)
She had such enormous fun, (on “enormous” circle arms out and around)
That she called for another elephant to come. (cup hands over mouth)
“Oh Elephant!”… (call out and then pound the floor for the running elephant sound)
Two elephants went out to play, (use two fingers…repeat above actions)
Over the hills and far away.
They had such enormous fun they called for another elephant to come.
“Oh Elephant!”…
(Repeat with as many elephants (fingers) as you want)

Five Gray Elephants

Five gray elephants, marching through the glade,
Decide to stop and play like they are having a parade.
The first sings his trunk and announces he’ll lead;
The next waves a flag which of course they need.
The third gray elephant trumpets a song;
The fourth beats a drum as he marches along.
While the fifth makes believe he’s the whole show
And nods and smiles to the crowd as they go.
Five gray elephants, marching through the glade,
Having a lot of fun during their parade.


Elephants At Work and Play

As five little elephants marched through the grass (march fingers of right hand)
They decided to stop and have a music class,
The first blew his trumpet and announced he'd be teacher. (make a trumpet of fists and blow)
The next gave a call of the wild jungle animal (cup hands to mouth, make a low eerie sound)
The third & fourth elephants trumpeted a song, (make a trumpet and blow twice )
But the last little elephant just followed along,
Then he left the others as he didn't care to play,
And he carried tree logs the rest of the day. (link the little finger under two fingers of the left hand and carry them away)

Zoo Animals  
(To the tune of If You’re Happy and You Know It)

If you want to be an elephant swing your trunk
If you want to be an elephant swing your trunk
If you want to be an elephant, if you want to be an elephant
If you want to be an elephant swing your trunk

Monkey, jump up high!
Parrot — flap your wings
Elephant — swing your trunk
Lion — roar out loud
Giraffe — stand up tall

An Elephant Goes
An elephant goes like this and that, (wave arms in front like trunk)
He’s oh so big, (raise arms up)
And he’s oh so fat. (spread arms out to the sides)
He has no fingers, (wiggle fingers)
He has no toes, (shake feet)
BUT, goodness gracious, WHAT A NOSE!

The Elephants Are Here! (To the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell")

The elephants are here! (Look excited)
The elephants are here!
Look at all the elephants! (Shade eyes as if looking)
The elephants are here!

They're exercising now. (March in place, keeping feet on floor, pumping arms)
They're exercising now.
Look at all the elephants!
They're exercising now.

They're jumping up and down! They're jumping up and down!
Look at all the elephants! They're jumping up and down!

They're touching all their toes…
They're spinning 'round and 'round…
They're all exhausted now...
They're all exhausted now...
Look at all the elephants...
They're all exhausted now...
ZZZZZZZ (Lots of snoring) 


Children’s Books GuideA wonderful list of books about our excellent elephant friends.


Please note, websites change at a rapid pace and weblinks may change or break without notice. I cannot be responsible for redirected or broken links.  At the time of this posting all links were in working order. Thank you for understanding.

Karen Chace 2016 ©
This blog post was researched and compiled by Karen Chace. Permission for private use is granted. Distribution, either electronically or on paper is prohibited without my expressed written permission. For permission please contact me at Of course, if you wish to link to my blog via your website, blog, newsletter, Facebook page or Twitter please feel free to do so; I greatly appreciate your support and personal integrity.

1 comment:

denvermajestic0 said...

I like your post & I will always be coming frequently to read more of your post. Thank you very much for your post once more.

Nursery Rhymes and songs