Easy-to-teach, easy-to-learn educational resources for young children.

If You're Happy

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Language Focus Other songs about: emotions

Emotions (happy, angry, scared, sleepy). Actions (clap your hands, stomp your feet, say, "Oh no!" take a nap).

If You're Happy Lyrics and Actions

♫ If you're happy happy happy [Smile and put your index fingers on your cheeks.]
clap your hands. [Clap your hands.]
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands.
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands, clap your hands.
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands.

If you're angry angry angry [Make an angry face and cross your arms over your chest.]
stomp your feet. [Stomp your feet.]
If you're angry angry angry
stomp your feet.
If you're angry angry angry
stomp your feet, stomp your feet.
If you're angry angry angry
stomp your feet.

If you're scared scared scared [Make a scared face and place your hands on your cheeks.]
say, "Oh no!" [Say, "Oh no!"]
If you're scared scared scared
say, "Oh no!"
If you're scared scared scared
say, "Oh no!" Say, "Oh no!"
If you're scared scared scared
say, "Oh no!"

If you're sleepy sleepy sleepy [Make a sleepy face.]
take a nap. [Rest your head on your hands and pretend to sleep.]
If you're sleepy sleepy sleepy
take a nap.
If you're sleepy sleepy sleepy
take a nap, take a nap.
If you're sleepy sleepy sleepy
take a nap.

If you're happy happy happy [Smile and put your index fingers on your cheeks.]
clap your hands. [Clap your hands.]
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands.
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands, clap your hands.
If you're happy happy happy
clap your hands. ♫

Classroom Benefits

"If You're Happy" is great for helping young learners express emotions. This version is another traditional kids song we have made SUPER simple. The traditional version of this song can be a little tough for younger learners. If you visit an EFL or ESL class, or even a class of younger native-speakers, you'll often hear the children singing something like:
If you're happy (mumble, mumble, mumble) clap your hands!
If you're happy (mumble, mumble, mumble) clap your hands!
If you're happy (mumble, mumble, mumble),
(mumble, mumble, mumble)
If you're happy (mumble, mumble, mumble) clap your hands!
The tempo is often too quick and phrases like "and you know it" and "then your face will surely show it" aren't easy for young children to sing or understand through gestures and expressions. Since we like to use this song to teach emotions, we've slowed it down a little and simplified the lyrics to just the emotions and the body language that express those emotions. This version allows even very young kids to sing all the lyrics and act them out with gestures.

Activity Ideas

Before or after this song, explore emotions by making faces in handheld mirrors. 1

Tell students to make a happy/angry/scared/sleepy/sad/etc. face and take their pictures with a camera phone or a digital camera and then show them their pictures. 2

Print out the pictures and make an emotions book or bulletin board. Write the emotion under each one. 3

If you work with autistic children, an emotions book is great for helping the children to recognize other people's feelings. You may not be able to have your students pose for the pictures, but you can make an emotions book with photos of other people or by cutting out pictures from magazines. 4

This is a great warm up song. The actions and gestures are so easy that new students are able to quickly follow along. After the song, ask the students their names and how they are doing. If they respond with "Imfinethankyouandyou?" ask instead if they are happy, angry, scared, sleepy, sad, hungry, etc. and gesture the word. 5

See our Pinterest board on Teaching Emotions. 6

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