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I'm a little tea pot

I realized yesterday that none of the local baby/toddler song groups I've been going to for the last several years has done "I'm a little teapot." And yet I *know* I know at least a couple of UK natives who know it, having heard them use it before.

Poll #2011574 Tea pot

Are these the lyrics you know?

I'm a little tea pot
Short and stout
Here is my handle
Here is my spout
When I get all steamed up
Hear me shout
Tip me over
and pour me out.

A history of teapots

I grew up in the UK with this song.
I grew up in the US with this song.
I grew up somewhere else with this song.
I did not grow up with this song.
I learned this song later in life.
The actions are too complicated for babies/toddlers.
This song has gone out of fashion in the UK.

Do you have a teapot?

My household has a teapot.
My household has more than one teapot.
My household is teapot-free.
I used to have a teapot, but do not any more.
Hurray for lots of variety in kinds of tea/infusions to drink, even if it precludes needing to a teapot to share!

P.S. There's a missing "have" in that last line.



( 35 comments — Leave a comment )
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May. 20th, 2015 01:46 pm (UTC)
Version I know is slightly different: When the water's boiling, hear me shout, Tip me up and pour me out.
May. 20th, 2015 02:33 pm (UTC)
Me too. "When the kettle's boiling, hear me shout, tip me up and pour me out."

Though it certainly wasn't one of my childhood rhymes (I don't rememeber it on 'Singing Together' or 'Listen with Mother') I have a vague feeling I came across it as a US import.
(no subject) - heleninwales - May. 20th, 2015 03:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hawkida - May. 20th, 2015 03:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pennski - May. 31st, 2015 08:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - mair_aw - May. 20th, 2015 06:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 20th, 2015 01:47 pm (UTC)
"Here's my handle, here's my spout", not "Here is", which doesn't scan as well.
May. 20th, 2015 01:49 pm (UTC)
I grew up with "here is" and it scans better to my ear.
(no subject) - kekhmet - May. 20th, 2015 01:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - klwilliams - May. 20th, 2015 11:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 20th, 2015 01:49 pm (UTC)
I grew up with "When the water's steamed up / Then I shout."
May. 20th, 2015 01:52 pm (UTC)
A friend of my dad's generation, a big backwoodsman with a bushy beard who lives in a hit in the forest, won a talent competition as a boy with the following act.

'I'm a little teapot, short and stout, here's my handle, *places hand on hip*, here's my...*places other hand on hip*...handle?'

*looks confused*

'I'm a little teapot, short and stout, here's my handle, *places hand on hip*, here's my...*places other hand on hip*...handle?'

*looks even more confused, brow wrinkles*

*begins again full of joviality, determined to succeed*

'I'm a little teapot, short and stout, here's my handle, *places hand on hip*, here's my...Dammit, I'm a sugarbowl!'
May. 20th, 2015 02:12 pm (UTC)
hahaha! My mom always does the 'sugarbowl' variation too.

And, I cannot for the life of me remember what lyrics I learned instead of 'when I get all steamed up,' but I'm sure that's not what the line was...
(no subject) - ceb - May. 20th, 2015 03:11 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - owlfish - May. 20th, 2015 05:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ceb - May. 20th, 2015 05:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - owlfish - May. 20th, 2015 05:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ceb - May. 20th, 2015 03:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - khalinche - May. 20th, 2015 03:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ceb - May. 20th, 2015 03:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 20th, 2015 02:02 pm (UTC)
I learnt this song from watching Captain Kangaroo! Mr. Green Jeans did it :-)

Strictly speaking I think the verison I knew was

"Then I Shout"
"Just Tip Me Over"

hmm should I go back and change my poll answers?

Edited at 2015-05-20 02:07 pm (UTC)
May. 20th, 2015 02:36 pm (UTC)
BTW, we always use a teapot in this household, but also teabags because with hard London water putting a teabag in a mug leaves a greasy film on the surface - in the teapot it gets trapped. And one teabag + one pot = two mugs.
May. 20th, 2015 02:36 pm (UTC)
The line I know is 'When the kettle whistles' (hear me shout)

Not sure if that was a regional variation - or just a family one as the first kettle I remember at my grandparents was indeed a stove-top whistling one.
May. 20th, 2015 02:40 pm (UTC)
When the kettle whistles...tip me up...

Teapots mean more drinks per teabag. This is good.
May. 20th, 2015 02:53 pm (UTC)
I know it as "When you hear the whistle, hear me shout, tip me up and pour me out". I hate tea. Oh yes, and (just read the other comments) I know "here's my handle/spout" rather than "here is".
May. 20th, 2015 03:50 pm (UTC)
I mostly use a teapot. I sometimes use loose tea, but also I use a pot with teabags because, as inamac and gillo said, you get more cups of tea per bag than 1 bag per mug.
May. 20th, 2015 03:53 pm (UTC)
This is the version I know as I know it, so long as you stop before the second verse:
May. 20th, 2015 03:58 pm (UTC)
I don't have good associations with this song because I vaguely remember some teacher asking/making a somewhat chubby girl perform it before the class. Even as a very young kid I knew that that was not a Good Idea.
May. 20th, 2015 04:39 pm (UTC)
I should add to my survey answers that my Mom sang this song to me, which she learned from her Mom, who was from the UK. So if there's an alternate US-version, I'm unfamiliar with it.
May. 20th, 2015 08:33 pm (UTC)
When it comes to tea-time
Hear me shout
Tip me up
And pour me out!
May. 21st, 2015 12:56 am (UTC)
I don't remember lines 5 & 6, but definitely 7 was "Tip me up", not "over". A tipped-over teapot is a calamity, spilling everywhere and probably breaking the lid.

I have had teapots all my life (and broken many lids); most of my life, I've had more than one. And used them daily, for different kinds of tea. (I like them colour-coded: black, green and white, for the three kinds of tea that I acknowledge.)

On the other hand, despite my clicking on that answer, I didn't really grow up with this song. It wasn't in our family repertoire. But I did grow up with a kid sister, who did go to ballet classes; she brought it home, complete with movements. We didn't adopt it (she was the youngest; of course we scorned her childish verses), but it stuck in my mind regardless.
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( 35 comments — Leave a comment )