A Little Red Hen Circle Time

A Little Red Hen circle time from Lavender's Blue Homeschool
A Little Red Hen circle time from Lavender's Blue Homeschool

This is a re-post of a circle from Oct. 2013 - Enjoy! I shared my version of The Little Red Hen story before because it's one of my favorites for nursery/kindergarten, but I thought it would be even more fun to turn it into a circle time.  It was so much fun, and I'm excited to share it with you!  If you aren't sure what a circle time is or how to get started, try these back posts on circle time, part one and part two.)  All of the verses and songs are traditional (some are adapted to fit the story).  The story retelling and the song recordings are by Kelly Ehrman.

I had a little hen, the prettiest ever seen, She washed up the dishes and kept the house so clean. She went to the mill to fetch me some flour, And brought it home in less than an hour. She baked me my bread, she brewed me my ale, She sat by the fire and told many a fine tale.

{Sing while skipping in a circle}

I Had a Little Hen

Once upon a time there was a little red hen.

Chook, chook, chook, chook, Good morning, Mrs. Hen. How many children have you got? Madam, I’ve got ten. Four of them are yellow, Four of them are brown, And two of them are speckled red, The nicest in the town!

{Wag one fist, then wag the other fist, open hands like asking a question, show ten fingers, show four fingers in one hand, show four fingers in the other hand, hold up just two thumbs, wag two thumbs}

The little red hen lived with her friends, the cow, the horse, and the cat.

Old McDonald had a farm, ee-i-ee-i-o. And on that farm he had a hen, ee-i-ee-i-o. With a cluck-cluck here and a cluck-cluck there, Here a cluck, there a cluck, everywhere a cluck-cluck, Old McDonald had a farm, ee-i-ee-i-o.

And on that farm he had a cow, ee-i-ee-i-o. With a moo-moo here and a moo-moo there, Here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo-moo, Old McDonald had a farm, ee-i-ee-i-o.

And on that farm he had a horse, ee-i-ee-i-o. With a neigh here and a neigh there, Here a neigh, there a neigh, everywhere a neigh, Old McDonald had a farm, ee-i-ee-i-o.

And on that farm he had a cat, ee-i-ee-i-o. With a meow-meow here and a meow-meow there, Here a meow, there a meow, everywhere a meow-meow, Old McDonald had a farm, ee-i-ee-i-o.

{Pretend to be the animals, move your body like the animal, and really make the sounds as you sing this song}

In the springtime the flowers were blooming, the leaves were appearing on the trees once more, and the farmers were busy planting their fields. One day the little red hen found some seeds of wheat and she was delighted! She hurried home to show them to her friends. The little red hen said, “Who will help me plant the wheat?”

Who will help me plant the wheat, plant the wheat, plant the wheat? Who will help me plant the wheat, so early in the morning?

{Sing to the tune of “Here we go ‘round the mulberry bush” while skipping}

Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush

“Moooo. Not I,” said the cow. “Neigh. Not I,” said the horse. “Meow. Not I,” said the kitty cat. So the little red hen said, “Then I will plant the seeds of wheat all by myself.” And so she planted the seeds of wheat.

In springtime the farmer she goes to the field brown, She takes her horses and ploughs the ground. The wheat and the oats and the barley she sows, And joyfully watches them prosper and grow.

In Springtime the Farmer

{Walk back and forth, plowing and sowing seeds}

In the summertime, the sun glowed bright and hot, the fields and gardens were growing and growing, and everywhere was green. The wheat grew tall and golden in the sun, and the little red hen asked her friends, “Who will help me cut the wheat?”

Who will help me cut the wheat, cut the wheat, cut the wheat? Who will help me cut the wheat, so early in the morning?

{Sing to the tune of “Here we go ‘round the mulberry bush” while skipping}

“Moooo. Not I,” said the cow. “Neigh. Not I,” said the horse. “Meow. Not I,” said the kitty cat. So the little red hen said, “Then I will cut the wheat all by myself.” And so she cut the stalks of wheat.

Oh the farmer cuts the wheat, the farmer cuts the wheat, Heigh-ho the derry-o, the farmer cuts the wheat.

{Sing to the tune of The Farmer’s in the Dell and pantomime cutting wheat in the field; Repeat 3 times}

In the autumn, the days grew cooler, the leaves turned beautiful shades of red and orange, gold and brown, and the farmers were busy bringing in the harvest. The autumn winds blew strong and turned the wheels of the mill.

When the wind blows, Then the mill goes. When the wind drops, Then the mill stops. {Spin in one direction and then stop}

When the wind blows, Then the mill goes. When the wind drops, Then the mill stops. {Spin in the other direction and then stop}

Clickety-clackety Clickety-clackety Clickety-clackety Clickety-clack. {Stand still and spin arms around like a windmill}

The little red hen asked her friends, “Who will help me take the wheat to the mill?”

Who will help me carry the wheat, carry the wheat, carry the wheat? Who will help me carry the wheat, so early in the morning?

{Sing to the tune of “Here we go ‘round the mulberry bush” while skipping}

“Moooo. Not I,” said the cow. “Neigh. Not I,” said the horse. “Meow. Not I,” said the kitty cat. So the little red hen said, “Then I will take the wheat to the mill all by myself.” And so she took the wheat to the mill. The miller ground the wheat into flour, and then the little red hen brought the big bags of flour back home.

Blow wind blow, And go mill go, That the miller may grind his corn, That the baker may take it and into bread bake it, And give us a loaf in the morn, Give us a loaf in the morn.

Blow Wind Blow

In the winter the snow fell and the days were short and very cold. The little red hen asked her friends, “Who will help me bake the bread?”

Who will help me bake the bread, bake the bread, bake the bread? Who will help me bake the bread, so early in the morning?

{Sing to the tune of “Here we go ‘round the mulberry bush” while skipping}

“Moooo. Not I,” said the cow. “Neigh. Not I,” said the horse. “Meow. Not I,” said the kitty cat. So the little red hen said, “Then I will bake the bread all by myself.” And so she took the flour, mixed it and kneaded it and put it in the oven.

The farmer gave us golden grain For us to grind and grind. Now it’s flour brown and white, Soft and very fine. Add the water, yeast, and honey, Mix it with our hands. When it’s soft and not too runny, Let it stand and stand. Shape the dough into a loaf, Put it in to cook. When it’s crusty, crisp and brown, Then we’ll have a look.

And while the bread was baking, it smelled wonderful! The cow and the horse and the cat came running when they smelled that fresh bread. The little red hen took the bread out of the oven and asked her friends, “Who will help me eat the bread?”

Who will help me eat the bread, eat the bread, eat the bread? Who will help me eat the bread, so early in the morning?

{Sing to the tune of “Here we go ‘round the mulberry bush” while skipping}

“Moooo. I will!” said the cow. “Neigh. I will!” said the horse. “Meow. I will!” said the kitty cat. But the little red hen said, “Oh, no, no, no! I planted the seeds of wheat, I cut the wheat, I took the wheat to the mill and brought home the flour, and I baked the bread, all by myself. Now I will eat the bread – all by myself!” And so she did, and it was delicious!

End with your favorite mealtime blessing. In our family these are our favorites:

Earth Who Gave to Us This Food  {Traditional verse set to a tune from a different traditional Waldorf birthday song!}

Earth Who Gave to Us this Food

Blessings on the Blossom

Or you could use this one:

Before the flour, the mill. Before the mill, the grain. Before the grain, sun, earth, and rain, The beauty of God’s will.

The End.