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Change Things Up!
10 “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” Variations
If you sing to your children, you have probably sung this song more times than you’d care to recall. But, both the original and “Twinkle, twinkle, little star” variations are incredibly popular (with very good reason)!
Did you already know it serves as the same melody for the “ABC Song” as well as “Baa, Baa Black Sheep”? This type of song – where the melody stays the same but the words change – is called a piggyback song. And, if you’d like to find out more about what that means, just check out these 5 excellent piggyback songs.
But for now, you may be wondering though why “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” is so prevalent. And the answer is quite simple.
Why is “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” so popular?
Well, for starters, both the melody and the rhythm are quite simple. The melody is only a small range (a sixth to be exact), which makes it easy to sing for anyone. There are no extreme high or low notes to reach and pretty much anyone can sing within this small range.
In addition, the rhythm for the first verse is made up entirely a single note values – so there aren’t any funky rhythms. This rhythm is incredibly basic, which makes it easy to modify.
Both of these factors (the small range and the easy rhythm) make the song incredibly easy to sing, as well as easy to memorize. Making it even easier to memorize is the fact that the first two lines of the rhyme are the same as the fifth and sixth lines. Naturally, repetition helps us to remember things quicker.
Because this melody is so simple, we can easily add our own modifications. We can change the text to suit our need, whether it be a single word or a whole change in topic! And this is just one way to make singing these song tons more fun! There are other ways to make simple changes or additions to songs to make them much more enjoyable for both you and your child.
But, this way of learning music is beneficial for many parents. Because if you already know the melody, then all you have to do is change up a few words and make a whole new song! In fact, it’s what music educators do quite often with their young students.
So, what are some of the “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” variations?
Below, you’ll find a list of 10 variations for this song. The variations you’ll find out there are almost endless. But I’ve scoured Pinterest, and other sources to bring you some of the best alternatives.
And while the possibilities are seemingly endless, the ones I’ve selected here are super easy for you to learn. Quite often you’ll find a variation of the song and somehow the words just don’t line up with the melody or it just makes the rhythm too complicated.
So, rest assured, the songs listed below are hand-picked for their clarity and simplicity. And I’ve generally only included a single verse so the amount of text is minimal.
So, here are 10 easy-to-learn, simple variations of the tune “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”.
1) A Welcome Song
Here’s a great way to start any music time at home. Or, if there is no dedicated music time in your house, use this song when they come home from preschool or before sitting down for their meal! This song also is perfect to personalize for your child. Just change “everyone” to use your own child’s name and they’ll feel like you created a song just for them!
If you want, there are two simple movements that will involve children and makes the engagement in the song that much more enjoyable! This version was found over at Miss Sarah’s Storytime.
2) Monster, Monster Turn Around!
The inspiration for this song came from Cape May County Library and their accompanying Pinterest account. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, the blog on their website didn’t seem to be working (at the very least, I couldn’t access from abroad). I highly recommend you take a look through their pins where you are sure to find tons of inspiration for changing up the text to many songs, rhymes, and even popular children’s books.
This version is more like a chant, but with a few tweaks, it actually fits perfectly into the melody of “Twinkle, twinkle little star”. It’s perfect as an attention-getter! If your little ones are getting restless, have them either sing with you or do the movements. This gives little ones a chance to get their wiggles out and then refocus.
If you like this type of song, you will also enjoy these additional printable versions. The four other versions make use of unicorns, dinosaurs, children, and elephants so you are sure to find one that will suit your needs! Just drop your email in the sign-up form here and I’ll send you these free printables for you to use.
3) The Moving Song
Okay, so I had to sneak this version in here. It’s actually one of my own that I created and it’s similar to a movement song based upon the tune of “Are you sleeping?”. Like the Monster song above, it gives your children a great opportunity to move around and get any jitters out, which can allow them to refocus on their task at hand (if only for a short time). Never underestimate the power of a music and movement song!
4) The Vegetable Song
Need a little help in getting your children to eat some vegetables? You probably already know that singing about it is one of my go-to options for helping in difficult situations (where possible).
This version of the song was originally spotted on Preschool Education. They have a simple website with lots of themes and topics and many of the songs are based upon well-known melodies – like this one.
5) The Weather Song
So, here is another one of my own variations. This is a great one to sing to your little one to get them talking about the weather. They can learn all the basic concepts and this song helps to reinforce those ideas. As an added bonus, it’s got two verses just to make sure all major weather events are covered.
6) The Rainbow Song
Is your toddler starting to learn colors? Then why not use a “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” variation to teach them the colors of the rainbow! Try singing this song a bit slower and give your little one a chance to find each color on a picture of the rainbow.
You can find this song, as well as numerous others, over at the Teaching Mama. She has amazing examples of how almost any song can be created using existing tunes. If you aren’t familiar with her selection of songs, make sure to check them out!
7) Summertime Song
Here, is another song from the Teaching Mama. You can sing about all the fun things you like to do in summertime, too! Just keep in mind with this version, that the rhythms are a bit varied. But overall, the melody is still the same.
8) The Thanksgiving Song
This is song that I found over at Clubhouse Kids on Teachers Pay Teachers. I’ve modified it slightly to fit a simpler rhythm, but the overall words are the same.
Clubhouse Kids is a great resource if you are looking for easy songs to learn each month! She has free printables with songs for each month. And the best part is a few of those are based on well-known children’s songs, so you won’t have to learn a whole new song!
9) Twinkle, Twinkle Christmas Star
Here is another version that puts a Christmas spin on the old classic. I found this version also on Clubhouse Kids page, the same as above. This version would naturally be a great variation of the well-known tune for Christmas time. Funnily enough, in Germany, they sing their version of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” on their Christmas concerts!
10) The Snowflakes Song
If you need a winter-themed song to get your children excited about snow, then here is the perfect solution! It’s a simple, yet perfect variation to the original words. This version is also available as a free download from Teacher’s Pay Teachers by C and L Curriculum.
They also provide simple finger movements to go with this song, which are child-friendly and can be easily illustrated and mimicked by young toddlers.
So, there you have it – 10 simple and creative “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” variations. You know that singing the same song over and over gets boring pretty quickly. But now, you have options to sing about something else without having to learn an entirely new song! And just changing up the text can making singing the same melody a lot less boring.
My hope is that this illustrates why this particular song is such a good one to have in your repertoire. This song is easily adaptable for you to change the lyrics (and the rhythms) to suit whatever topic you want to sing about! As a past teacher and parent myself, I fully understand the need to have a few “basics” that you can turn to time and time again so that you can reuse them for many different topics.
What songs do you use as a go-to around the home? As always, I’d love to hear how you use this song, so please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below or send an email my way.
Happy music making,