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Audio Single Song – Hickory Dickory Dock
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Time Signature: 6/8 Key: C Major
Hickory Dickory Dock is a popular English Nursery Rhyme.
The earliest recorded version of the rhyme was published in London in about 1744, which uses the opening line: ‘Hickere, Dickere Dock’. The next recorded version in 1765, uses ‘Dickery, Dickery Dock’.
The rhyme is thought by some commentators to have originated as a counting-out rhyme used by Westmorland shepherds in the nineteenth century.
The rhyme is thought to have been based on the astronomical clock at Exeter Cathedral. The clock has a small hole in the door below the face for the resident cat to hunt mice.
Hickory Dickory Dock is a great song for students to experience the beat in a 6/8 time signature.
Actions can easily be made up to fit the words. Swinging the arms to the beat, like the pendulum of a grandfather clock, is one example.
The song can be repeated replacing “one” with other numbers up to twelve.
Melodically, the tones used in the melody of this song are: d r m f s l t d’
The melodic line goes up at the beginning and down at the end. Children can add their own instrumentation eg tone blocks making TICK TOCK sound in between phrases, such as “Hickory Dickory Dock”.
Teaching Points: 6/8 metre, actions to beat, major scale, instruments, improvisation, counting, numbers.
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