Five Little Ducks


Children enjoy singing songs and listening to stories about animals. Nursery rhymes are a great way to engage all ages. Music forms an important part of a child’s development, stimulating the speech and thinking areas of the brain. Including music in your playgroup session provides the opportunity for children to develop listening, language and physical skills. 

What you need?

  • Music!
  • Puppets or plastic ducks to visually show the children what is happening
  • Musical instruments
  • Felt boards (if available)


1. Invite children and families to sit in a circle.

2. Sing the Five Little Ducks; take a duck away each time one doesn’t come back, or use ‘duck’ puppets to act out the song.

3. Sing as many times as you like!

4. Use musical instruments as you sing.


Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat and Hey Diddle Diddle are other nursery favourites you can sing with children.

Extension of the activity

  • Sing other interactive songs like Teddy Bear Teddy Bear Turn Around etc.
  • Read the story or Five Little Ducks and turn the pages as you sing as this helps children who learn visually.
  • Use home-made musical instruments.
  • Make a playlist as a group for sessions, but also share it with families.

Language Structure / Keywords

Encourage words like faster, slower, up and down. Vary the delivery of the songs by singing softly, high or low.  Mathematical concepts are incorporated into this activity by using rhythm, patterns and subtraction (e.g., five ducks then four etc.).