Subscribe to our Newsletter

The Jolly Miller (Stow-on-the-Wold version)

Jolly Miller (Stow-on-the-Wold) Prep
Key stage 2 years 3/4

The original manuscript and notes –  Go to this link to download the “See the song/tune as collected (PDF file)

Audio of song:

Resources needed:
audio equipment to play music,
whiteboard to project text and write text.
Paper and pencils/pens.
In advance need to find the audio file and words on the website
Length of lesson 45-60mins

Learning Intentions:
• To Learn a traditional playground game and song
• Understand how children played in the past
• Create a new game

What is a folk song?
• Not sung by professional musicians
• Passed down through families/communities/friends
• some songs are very old (often dating back to seventeenth century or earlier.
• Were often sung without any instruments.
• Edwardian era
• After the death of Queen Victoria
• Before the first world war
• Lots of people working on the land
• The country was peaceful and wealthy
Cecil Sharp
• Collected over 1600 folk songs
• Also collected Morris dances

• Every farming community had a mill.
• Millers were paid by taking some of the flour.
• Farmers always used to think that the millers were taking more than their fair share.

Jolly Miller (Stow-on-the-Wold) Lesson:

  • Ask children what they think a folk song is.
  • Tell them what a folk song is
  • Introduce the Jolly Miller
  • Listen to song without the words displayed
  • Ask children what they can remember
  • Play song again with words and get the children to sing along
  • Ask the children what games they play, do they have songs that go with them?
  • Look at other old games like spinning tops and hoops.
  • Get the children to invent their own game with a song
  • Finish the session by showing the games to the rest of the group.
  • Optional extra activity: write a series of clear instructions for the game, pass it on to
  • another group and see if they can follow