1) Frère Jacques – perhaps one of the most widely translated and borrowed French songs for kids, Frère Jacques is a fun children’s about a friar who must wake up to ring the morning bells. While the translation is taken loosely in other languages to suggest that the friar is still asleep despite ringing bells, it is nonetheless fun to sing. The melody is traditionally sung as a round, meaning one person starts, and when they reach the next set of lyrics, another person joins in from the beginning.
2) Alouette – while not entirely the friendliest of songs, because it depicts someone plucking the feathers off an annoying lark, this song’s melody is ubiquitous, sounding in many nursery toys without lyrics as well. It also experiences numerous lyric substitutions to fill in almost anywhere as a catchy jingle. The song is cumulative, which means each verse adds on to the previous, similar to “The 12 Days of Christmas” (more…)