Last week I was finishing up a run outside and nearly tripped over a turtle! (You can see a video of him/her on my Instagram post about it). And I gotta tell ya, the Turtle may just be the emblem of my summer. I’m feeling called to sloooooow way down, savor the moment, be in nature, and be true to my nature – much like a turtle. 🙂

(Don’t worry, I’ve got some projects in the works & you’ll still get your weekly goodies from me!)

But after seeing that turtle, I can’t stop thinking of this fun turtle rhyme with motions that I learned a while back. So,



(This is NOT the Tiny Tim version – I do that one with a frog. This is “I had a little turtle, he lived in a box…..)


FINE MOTOR SKILLS: This rhyme we say while sitting and using our hands and arms only. We put lots of different motions to use in this one:  “drawing” in the air with our fingers, we mime a grasping/climbing motion, wrist and arm movements for “swimming”, the all important pinching motion with our thumb and fingers (pre-writing movement), and clapping. Oh! And my favorite thing is that we learn to make a turtle with our hands! It’s a lot of skill building all while simply having fun with a rhyme! 

STORYTELLING & SEQUENCING:  As with most great children’s rhymes, this one is a little story. It not only has a beginning, middle and an end, but it also has a sequence in at that gets repeated. So it’s both the elements of storytelling and math skills (sequencing) all rolled in one!)

DRAMATIZATION (and a little sass!):  Along with the storytelling, we are acting out the story of what happened – including outsmarting that turtle and not getting caught! Dramatization helps us embody the storytelling – helps with remembering the words and the order of the story – and is a great tool for learning! Even though it’s got a smidge of sass to it, I love wagging our finger in the end, with confidence and a little swagger saying “but he didn’t catch me.”  It’s fun to “act out” confidence.

View video above, and here’s a link to share –>

ENJOY!! Feel free to use this rhyme or video in your classes – virtual or live!, early childhood centers, and homes! And please SHARE!

Have a great week!


Miss Nina

P.S. I’ll be hosting TWO Zoom, drop-in music and movement classes over the summer – one in July & one in August. Keep your eye on your email and for details….

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