Progressive Baby Rhymes

RB cleverly dodged his first Baby Rhymetime by feeding for the entire time under his invisibility cape. Helpfully it allowed me to vet the educational entertainment. The other three mums and the librarian holding it were all lovely. We sat on the colourful rug in a library corner and the librarian went through her folder of rhymes aided by a big bag of props. And it was all free. So far, so great. 

However, the rhymes were a tad regressive. I went with a best friend who clocked the ones I’d take issue with. 

I wasn’t too keen on the mummy bird staying home while daddy brought home the crumb (mummy might bring crumb home too. Maybe there is no daddy.)

I smiled through mummy duck being ignored three times while one word from daddy duck got the three ducklings under control (bold, loud women unite).

And I bit my lip as the lady rode ‘trit trot, trit trot’ (said delicately), the gentleman rode ‘gallop, gallop’ (said authoritatively) while the farmer rode ‘gallump, gallump’ (said drunkenly, while swaying side to side) before falling off. Thankfully there were no farmers in the room. 

Now you may say, ‘WTF Verity? Be cool, it doesn’t matter’. But it does, social norms seep into our subconscious and influence what we believe and how we behave. I live in the regions and local attitudes are already far less progressive than London. I frequently hear racist, sexist, homophobic and xenophobic jokes and comments said casually and meant genuinely. I don’t need nursery rhymes strengthening the attitudes I’ll be trying to undermine. 

There’s an open invite to teach new rhymes. Anyone know any good ones about The Transgender Child, Daddy and Daddy or The Lovely Muslim Family? Or one about a successful, working mum might be a good start. 

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