The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like this:

Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O!
And on his farm he had some chicks, E-I-E-I-O!
With a chick, chick here, and a chick, chick there, Here a chick, there a chick, Everywhere a chick, chick, Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O!
In other verses, the name of the animal is mentioned only once, and then the sound of it is repeated several times, like ducks - quack, quack, cows - moo, moo, and turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

Nobuko Iwasaki
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The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like this: Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O! And on his ... moo, and turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

My God, you're right. My entire weltanschauung has been shifted.

DC
The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like this: Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O! And on his ... like ducks - quack, quack, cows - moo, moo, and turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"?

Erm.. yes, they do, I think. I guess "cheep, cheep" might have been better, but I can live with "chick, chick".
This does, however, raise an intersting (?) point about onomataopoeia - the way different languages render non-verbal sounds.
I spent my life assuming that everyone knew that guns go "bang!" until I read the "Tintin" books in French, where they go "pan!". Which is actually a bit closer to the actual sound, now I come to think of it. ISTR that dogs bark differently ib French, too, i.e. not "woof" - but I can't remember what the French version was ATM.
Mike M
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The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like this: Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O! And on his ... moo, and turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

There's a lot of free-form variation on this song. Grown-ups often pause to let a small child fill in the blank, and then they just go with it. "And on this farm he had some ??" "With a ??"

"Cheep, cheep here," etc., would be a common way to express the noise that chicks make.

Best Donna Richoux
I spent my life assuming that everyone knew that guns go "bang!" until I read the "Tintin" books in French, ... dogs bark differently ib French, too, i.e. not "woof" - but I can't remember what the French version was ATM.

Good summary of this, covering lots of languages and lots of animals, at:
Sounds of the World's Animals
http://www.georgetown.edu/cball/animals/

Best Donna Richoux
iwasaki wrote on 25 Jun 2004:
The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like this: Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O! And on his ... moo, and turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

I used to sing this with my son and we said "With a chick-chick here" etc. Neither of us cared that it's not the high-pitched sound that baby chicks make.

Franke: EFL teacher & medical editor.
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The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like ... turkeys - gobble, gobble. Surely chicks don't go "chick, chick"?

Erm.. yes, they do, I think. I guess "cheep, cheep" might have been better, but I can live with "chick, ... differently ib French, too, i.e. not "woof" - but I can't remember what the French version was ATM. Mike M

Indeed, Snowy, (Milou in the orignal) goes 'kai kai' in French.

DC, aware of that usage of 'goes' thank-you.
The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like ... "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

There's a lot of free-form variation on this song. Grown-ups often pause to let a small child fill in the ... ??" "With a ??" "Cheep, cheep here," etc., would be a common way to express the noise that chicks make.

Some years ago we were on a long drive with the kids and they got into an interminable round of "Old MacDonald" until I chipped in with:

"...and on that farm he had some MUTE SWANS, ee-aye-ee-ay-oh"

~)
Mike M
The lyrics of "Old MacDonald had a farm" goes like ... "chick, chick"? How do you teach this song to children?

There's a lot of free-form variation on this song. Grown-ups often pause to let a small child fill in the ... ??" "With a ??" "Cheep, cheep here," etc., would be a common way to express the noise that chicks make.

We only sang about hens clucking, but if we had had chicks, we would have come up with ". . .a peep peep here", and been unable to continue what with the sniggering.
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