Baa Baa Black Sheep Song For Kids
Baa, baa, black sheep,
Have you any wool?
Yes, sir, yes, sir,
Three bags full;
One for the master,
And one for the dame,
And one for the little boy
Who lives down the lane.
“Baa, Baa, Black Sheep” is an English nursery rhyme, the earliest surviving version of which dates from 1731. The words have not changed very much in two-and-a-half centuries. It is sung to a variant of the 1761 French melody Ah! vous dirai-je, maman. Uncorroborated theories have been advanced to explain the meaning of the rhyme, such as that it is a complaint against taxes levied on the Medieval English wool trade. In the twentieth century it was a subject of controversies in debates about political correctness. It has been used in literature and popular culture as a metaphor and allusion.
A controversy emerged over changing the language of “Baa Baa Black Sheep” in Britain from 1986, because, it was alleged in the popular press, it was seen as racially dubious. This was based only on a rewriting of the rhyme in one private nursery as an exercise for the children there and not on any local government policy. A similar controversy emerged in 1999 when reservations about the rhyme were submitted to Birmingham City Council by a working group on racism in children’s resources, which were never approved or implemented. Two private nurseries in Oxfordshire in 2006 altered the song to “Baa Baa Rainbow Sheep”, with black being replaced with a variety of other adjectives, like “happy, sad, hopping” and “pink”. In 2012, a private nursery in Kingston upon Thames replaced “black” with “little” for their Easter show. Commentators have asserted that these controversies have been exaggerated or distorted by some elements of the press as part of a more general campaign against political correctness.
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