Jingle Bells

If you only sing one holiday song at your storytime, it’s likely to be Jingle Bells, so here’s a nice simple version that I expect will be getting a lot of play in my own programs this month. If you prefer to play your songs with 3 chords or less, you can skip the D7. I assure you, the kids won’t notice.

And if you’re feeling playful, try Walter Minkel’s delightfully silly Jungle Bells. I’ve been meaning to play this one at my own storytimes for ages, and this might just be the year for it.

Jingle Bells is such a perennial favourite that we often forget to credit it, but I’d like to note that this was written in the 1850’s by James Lord Pierpont.


Jingle Bells
C                                              F
Dashing through the snow in a one horse open sleigh
                   G7                   C

O'er the fields we go laughing all the way
                                        F

Bells on bob tails ring making spirits bright
                   G7                                 C

What fun it is to laugh and sing a sleighing song tonight

G7   C                                      

Oh, jingle bells, jingle bells jingle all the way
F               C              (D7)              G7

Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one horse open sleigh
C                                          

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way
F                C               G7              C

Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one horse open sleigh



Jungle Bells
C                                         F
Dashing down the river, dashing down the Nile
                   G7                           C

Dashing down that river, on the back of a crocodile
                                   F

Hear hyenas laugh, hearing lions roar
                                G7                                  C

When you ride for a while on a crocodile, you’ll want to ride some more

G7    C                                       

Oh,  Jungle bells, jungle bells, jungle all the way
F               C               (D7)        G7

Oh, what fun it is to ride on a crocodile today (hey!)
C                                          

Jungle bells, jungle bells, jungle all the way
F              C                G7          C

Oh what fun it is to ride on a crocodile today

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Must Be Santa

For a few reasons (program timing, inclination, community) I don’t sing a lot of Christmas songs in my library. But if you do, this one is a fun cumulative, call and response that can also be extended with a felt story.

The songwriters are Hal Moore and Bill Fredericks, and it was first recorded in 1960, although if you’re a storytimer you’re probably more familiar with Raffi’s recording. This is a slightly simplified version (no bridge, fewer transitions), and I’ve transposed it into an easy ukulele key. If you like to sing/play in G, try it as G/D/C.


Must Be Santa
C                         G7

Who's got a beard that's long and white?
                           C

Santa's got a beard that's long and white
                       G7

Who comes around on a special night
                        C

Santa comes around on a special night
C

Special night, beard that's white
F                C

Must be Santa, must be Santa,
G7                    C
Must be Santa, Santa Claus

Verses
Who wears boots and a suit of red / long cap on his head...
Who's got a big red cherry nose / laughs this way HO HO HO...
Who very soon will come our way / eight little reindeer pull his sleigh...



Felt Story Extension
Here are a couple photos of my version (complete Santa, and component pieces). I used clip-art for the sleigh, and my colleague Linda’s reindeer pattern, but otherwise it’s original. The base Santa is adapted from a paper doll pattern.

Must Be Santa Felt

Must Be Santa all pieces

This week’s Flannel Friday is hosted at What Happens in Storytime, so check them out for more winter and holiday ideas.