The little girl is in a phase where all she wants to do is see nursery rhymes the entire day. She’ll whine , give me a ‘lost puppy ” look and say “Ba Ba” or “Eeya Eeya” or “Aasha bushaa” whenever she spies me doing something on my computer. She will continue to whine if her request isn’t heeded to , so we normally give in, lest she start bawling again. What a stubborn lil’ thing Beanie is turning into! Anyway , the post is not really going to be about beanie , but about the appalling stuff they call nursery rhymes.. Of course, not all of it is bad , but a few rotten apples are always bound to corrupt the rest.
The most irritating of them all is the one about an old man – “Goosey Goosey gander..”. It is a tad silly , but silliness is not what gets me each time I listen to it . An old man who doesn’t say his prayers is pushed down the stairs.. because .. well, he doesn’t say his prayers. Now, there are better ways to make a child realise the importance of prayers. The rhyme just reeks of meanness. I see how my daughter soaks up everything she listens to or sees , and know how impressionable the minds of little ones are. Then , there is “Jack and Jill”- I really wonder what is the point of making Jack and Jill tumble down the hill.There is another version of this rhyme where Jill laughs at Jack’s plastered crown ,and her momma beats her with a broom. Hello? What kind of messages are we sending our little ones with such songs. Are these meant for kids at all? Or are these folk songs that have become nursery rhymes because of their catchy tunes ? I am not saying that all rhymes have to be “Happy-Happy” and take the moral high ground. Pointless rhymes are fun and should remain so . I am only objecting to the meanness and unnecessary callousness. The list of such mean stuff is endless -Everyone would have heard of the cat that went to London and frightened the little mouse under the Queen’s chair. Some would say that this is what cats do , but is it necessary to make the Cat go all the way to London to do just that – the store room will suffice !
Maybe I am over-thinking all this because I am having to listen to these rhymes on an endless loop . Maybe we need to expose our children to the grimy aspects of human beings at a tender age to make sure that they are better adjusted.. Maybe I need to remove my rose tinted glasses and stop believing that childhood is all about candy floss . Can you think of a nursery rhymes with objectionable content? What do you think?