Childhood Folklore and Lullabies


We collected both childhood folklore and lullabies it the hopes of finding commonalities between the various pieces of folklore. All of the informants were interviewed at Dartmouth College either in person, over the phone, or by video chat. They were asked to share a lullaby, holiday tradition, or taboo saying/rhyme from their childhood. Once we completed all of the interviews we began to notice the similarities among them. Parental influence was one of the themes that appeared again and again. Obviosuly parents had almost complete control over the types of lullabies sung and the holiday traditions, but they also appeared to have influence with the taboo rhymes and sayings. Often, the informants remembered certain rhymes or sayings because they had a connection or significance to their parents. Another common theme we saw was that our lullabies were happy and uplifting verses threatening or scary. The holiday traditions we collected spanned across several countries and they revealed common themes of wishing and trying to attain good luck. Overall, this project taught us that even though childhood folklore and lullabies are widespread across states, countries and continent, one can identify central themes they revolve around.




Good Night, Sleep Tight

Hush Little Baby

Bengali Lullaby

Ba Ba Black Sheep

Aruru mi niño

Frère Jacques

Amazing Grace

Duérmete Mi Niño

Taboo Rhymes/Sayings

Miss Susie/Miss Lucy

Epidermis Taboo Saying

The K-i-s-s-i-n-g Song

Tarzan the Monkey Man

I Can See Your Weenis


Mable, Mable

Los Pollitos Dicen

¡Que Llueva, Que Llueva!


Croatian Easter Egg Tradition

Spanish New Year’s Grape Tradition


Patty Cake



  • Shannon Mukerji ’18
  • Mikey Richards ’18
  • Addie Chabot ’18
  • Brian Keere ’18
  • Chris Quintero ’18


Childhood, Children, Taboo Rhymes, Holiday Traditions, Lullabies