Chinese Nursery Rhymes Lyrics and Song Books with Pinyin

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in Chinese Nursery Rhyme

Looking for the best Chinese nursery rhymes for babies, toddlers, and children? To help you learn classic songs in Mandarin, I’m sharing lyrics for Chinese nursery rhymes with Pinyin and English translations.

Music is a fun and special way to teach kids Chinese. It’s how I learned the language as a parent, too!

Thanks to cute sound books, children can listen to Mandarin songs and nursery rhymes anytime.

Mandarin Chinese nursery rhymes music books with lyrics

BaoBao Learns Chinese Mandarin Nursery Rhymes Books

We’re obsessed with the BaoBao Learns Chinese music book series with Mandarin children’s songs!

Each nursery rhyme book features 6 classic songs with lyrics in simplified Chinese, Pinyin, and English.

With a push of a button, you can hear a real person sing each lovely Mandarin song. The buttons are easy enough for toddlers to push, and the thick, durable pages can withstand busy little hands.

With the flick of a switch, you can control the power and volume (Off/Low/High) on the back cover. Two AAA batteries are also included in the child-safe battery compartment. In this 90-second video, I show how to use these Mandarin nursery rhyme books.

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Click on the buttons below to see the full list of Chinese nursery rhymes included in each book.

Popular Mandarin Chinese nursery rhymes lyrics for kids

If you aren’t able to access the Mandarin nursery rhyme music books, here are the lyrics to popular children’s songs transcribed as follows:

  • Simplified Chinese / traditional Chinese (if different)
  • Pinyin
  • English

I’ve included a mix of classic Chinese children’s songs and translated English nursery rhymes.

Row Row Row Your Boat in Chinese

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in Chinese

This sweet lullaby has been part of our nightly bedtime routine since my children were babies. Since the translated lyrics are a little different from the original English song, I’ve typed out the literal meaning of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in Chinese.

一闪一闪亮晶晶 / 一閃一閃亮晶晶
(Yī shǎn yī shǎn liàng jīng jīng)
Twinkle twinkle sparkling

满天都是小星星 / 滿天都是小星星
(Mǎn tiān dōu shì xiǎo xīng xīng)
The sky is full of little stars

挂在天空放光明 / 掛在天空放光明
(Guà zài tiān kōng fàng guāng míng)
Shining, hanging in the sky 

好像许多小眼睛 / 好像很多小眼睛
(Hǎo xiàng xǔ duō xiǎo yǎn jīng)
Like many little eyes

一闪一闪亮晶晶 / 一閃一閃亮晶晶
(Yī shǎn yī shǎn liàng jīng jīng)
Twinkle twinkle sparkling

满天都是小星星 / 滿天都是小星星
(Mǎn tiān dōu shì xiǎo xīng xīng)
The sky is full of little stars

Happy Birthday Song in Chinese

After learning these song lyrics, you’ll be ready to sing Happy Birthday in Chinese! Singing this song in Chinese could be a fun surprise gift for a Chinese-speaking friend.

祝你生日快乐 / 祝你生日快樂
(Zhù nǐ shēng rì kuài lè)
Happy Birthday to You

祝你生日快乐 / 祝你生日快樂
(Zhù nǐ shēng rì kuài lè)
Happy Birthday to you

祝你幸福, 祝你健康
(Zhù nǐ xìng fú, zhù nǐ jiàn kāng)
Here’s to your happiness, Here’s to your good health

祝你前途光明
(Zhù nǐ qián tú guāng míng)
May your future be bright

祝你生日快乐 / 祝你生日快樂
(Zhù nǐ shēng rì kuài lè)
Happy Birthday to you

祝你生日快乐 / 祝你生日快樂
(Zhù nǐ shēng rì kuài lè)
Happy Birthday to you

祝你幸福, 祝你健康
(Zhù nǐ xìng fú, zhù nǐ jiàn kāng)
Here’s to your happiness, Here’s to your good health

有个温暖家庭 / 有個溫暖家庭
(Yǒu gè wēn nuǎn jiā tíng)
Here’s to your family

Explore: Printable Chinese Happy Birthday Song Lyrics and Activities

Where Are My Friends Song in Chinese

This timeless nursery rhyme teaches how to count in Mandarin. The repetition is fantastic for practicing common phrases like 在哪里/ 在哪裡 (Zài nǎ lǐ?/ Where is it?) and 在这里 / 在這裡(Zài zhè lǐ! Zài zhè lǐ! / It’s here!).

一二三四五六七 
(Yī èr sān sì wǔ liù qī)
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven

我的朋友在哪里?/ 我的朋友在哪裡?
(Wǒ de péng yǒu zài nǎ lǐ?)
Where are my friends?

在这里! 在这里!/ 在這裡! 在這裡!
(Zài zhè lǐ! zài zhè lǐ!)
They're here! They're here!

我的朋友在这里 / 我的朋友在這裡
(Wǒ de péng yǒu zài zhè lǐ)
My friends are all here

Elephant Chinese Nursery Rhyme

大象 (Dà xiàng / Elephant) was one of my children’s top favorite songs when they were little. I love that it encourages positive affirmations by celebrating the beauty of the elephant’s trunk.

When my children and I sing this Chinese song, we get creative and brainstorm other animals with long body parts, such as 猴子 (hóuzi / monkey) with long arms. Then, we would sub in those animals and keep on singing.

Because animals with short body parts are also cute, we would give those animals a chance to shine in this song, too!

大象, 大象
(Dà xiàng, dà xiàng)
Elephant, elephant

你的鼻子为什么那么长?/ 你的鼻子為什麼那麼長?
(Nǐ de bízi wèishéme nàme cháng?)
Why is your nose so long?

妈说鼻子长才是漂亮 / 媽媽說鼻子長才是漂亮
(Māmā shuō bízi cháng cái shì piàoliang.)
Mama says long noses are beautiful.

Explore: Kids Love This Montessori Animals and Continents Activity (Chinese, Korean, English)

Head Shoulders, Knees, and Toes in Chinese

This classic nursery rhyme helps children learn basic body parts in Mandarin.

头,肩膀,膝盖 脚, 膝盖 脚 / 頭,肩膀,膝蓋 腳, 膝蓋 腳
(Tóu, jiānbǎng, xīgài jiǎo)
Head, shoulders, knees and toes

膝盖 脚 / 膝蓋 腳
(Xīgài jiǎo)
Knees and toes

头,肩膀,膝盖 脚, 膝盖 脚 / 頭,肩膀,膝蓋 腳, 膝蓋 腳
(Tóu, jiānbǎng, xīgài jiǎo)
Head, shoulders, knees and toes

膝盖 脚 / 膝蓋 腳
(Xīgài jiǎo)
Knees and toes

眼睛,耳朵,鼻子,和嘴巴
(Yǎnjīng, ěrduo, bízi hé zuǐba)
Eyes and ears and nose and mouth

头,肩膀,膝盖 脚, 膝盖 脚 / 頭,肩膀,膝蓋 腳, 膝蓋 腳
(Tóu, jiānbǎng, xīgài jiǎo)
Head, shoulders, knees and toes

Row Row Row Your Boat in Chinese

This soothing Mandarin song makes for a calming bedtime lullaby.

划,划,划小船
(Huà, huà, huà xiǎochuán)
Row, row, row your boat 

缓缓顺流而下/緩緩順流而下
(Huǎn huǎn shùnliú ér xià)
Gently down the stream

真开心,真开心,真开心,真开心 / 真開心,真開心,真開心,真開心
(Zhēn kāixīn, zhēn kāixīn, zhēn kāixīn, zhēn kāixīn)
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily 

生活像梦境/生活像夢境
(Shēnghuó xiàng mèngjìng)
Life is but a dream

Good Little Rabbit Chinese Nursery Rhyme

This classic nursery rhyme comes with life lessons: don’t open the door to strangers! It’s also a popular Chinese New Year song, particularly during the Year of the Rabbit.

小兔子乖乖
(Xiǎo tùzi guāi guāi)
Good little rabbit

把门开开 / 把門開開
(Bǎ mén kāi kāi)
Open up the door

快点儿开开 / 快點兒開開
(Kuài diǎn ér kāi kāi)
Open it quickly

我要进来 / 我要進來
(Wǒ yào jìnlái)
I want to come in

不开 不开 我不开 / 不開 不開 我不開
(Bù kāi bù kāi wǒ bù kāi)
No, no, I will not open it

妈妈没回来 / 媽媽沒回來
(Māmā méi huílái)
Mama is not home

谁来也不开 / 誰來也不開
(Shuí lái yě bù kāi) No matter who it is, I will not open the door 小兔子乖乖 (Xiǎo tùzi guāi guāi) Good little rabbit 把门开开 / 把門開開 (Bǎ mén kāi kāi) Open up the door 快点儿开开 / 快點兒開開 (Kuài diǎn ér kāi kāi) Open it quickly 我要进来 / 我要進來 (Wǒ yào jìnlái) I want to come in 就开 就开 我就开 / 就开 就开 我就开
(Jiù kāi jiù kāi wǒ jiù kāi) Okay, okay, I will open it right away
妈妈回来了 / 媽媽回來了 (Māmā huílái le) Mama came back home 快点把门开 / 快點把門開(Kuài diǎn bǎ mén kāi) I will open the door right away

Related: Popular Korean Children’s Songs and Nursery Rhymes

Itsy Bitsy Spider in Chinese

The lyrics for this translated nursery rhyme are a little more advanced than the other Chinese songs here! There’s a lot of action with the spider going up and down the water spout and the weather changing, but it’s definitely a lot of fun for kids.

一只两只蜘蛛爬呀爬出来 / 一隻兩只蜘蛛爬呀爬出來
(Yī zhī liǎng zhī zhī zhū pá ya pá chū lái)
Itsy bitsy spider climbed up the water spout

雨水落下来帮它洗洗澡 / 雨水落下來幫它洗洗澡
(Yǔ shuǐ luò xià lái bāng tā xǐ xǐ zǎo)
Down came the rain and washed the spider out

太阳出来了照着它身体呀 / 太陽出來了照著它身體呀
(Tài yáng chū lái le zhào zhé tā shēn tǐ ya)
Out came the sun and dried up all the rain

一只两只蜘蛛爬呀爬出来 / 一隻兩只蜘蛛爬呀爬出來
(Yī zhī liǎng zhī zhī zhū pá ya pá chū lái)
Now itsy bitsy spider went up the spout again

What are your children’s favorite Chinese nursery rhymes?

What are your favorite Chinese children’s songs for learning Mandarin? I hope the nursery rhyme lyrics in Chinese, Pinyin, and English were helpful for your family. Please share your experience in the comments below!

23 Comments

  1. My daughters love the A Little Mandarin album with clear words and catchy songs, they have learnt a lot more Chinese words from it. Their favorite song is twinkle twinkle little star it was easy to get them to listen and sing the Chinese version because they love the English version so much.

  2. Michelle Engerer says:

    My kids like 我有一只小毛驴。We just started listening to chinese songs so I can’t tell yet but I would think so because that’s what happened to English songs.

  3. My LO loves to sing and he does seems to memorize it if it’s in a song! He loves to sing happy birthday, 2 tigers and where’s my friend in Chinese! Would love to have these books for him to learn more and have better pronouncing Chinese words. And make me learn as well 😁👍🏻❤️🙏🏻 Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. My 8.5 month son likes the Family Finger Song (I translated it into Chinese). His face glows every time I sing it! He also loves 1-2-3 song in Chinese! I cant wait to expose him more to the Chinese language (even though I am not as fluent as I used to) by borrowing your techniques! 🙂

  5. My son’s current favorite song is from 婷婷唱古文, they sing those poem in songs. It is definitely beneficial for my son

  6. My son is currently 11 months old and we read to him daily but I want him to learn more Chinese so he can speak with his grandparents. What are other ways of learning Chinese at this age? Thank you!

  7. Hello Betty, I think this book would be helpful for my daughter’s stage of learning! Do you have other books planned?

  8. Judy Seto says:

    What other books would you guys plan for next? I was born in America and my Chinese reading and writing wise is not proficient. Therefore, I rely on books that have pinyin like this. It would be wonderful for my child to be able to receive this book. Thank you so much for the giveaway.

  9. Beautiful book, and are there any books with bopomofo available? I know it has music but I think it will help her with tones. Thanks

  10. Great review! This would be great for my littlest one! Will the author be making a second volume?

  11. My children loves to sing 童话(Fairy Tale) by 王光良. Learning Mandrin not only to know about their culture, but also be able to live in Asia. Maybe more career opportunities. Thank you for your posts!

  12. My son’s favorite song is the days of the week song by Singing Walrus! He always starts to smile and dance when that song comes on. I want him to learn Chinese because He is part Chinese, Filipino and Korean. I would love him to be able to communicate with his grandparents and understand the beauty of all his nationalities.

  13. Adeline Tan hx says:

    My kids favourite song is Ni Wa Wa. Need to cultivate my kids for to learn and write Chinese in funfilled methods so that they will love Chinese. Being Chinese, it is important to know our languages.

  14. My older son loves old McDonald had a farm while my younger son loves ba ba black sheep. We love to sing in our family but wish they could sing more songs in Chinese. I think Chinese is important to expand their knowledge, not only to understand their heritage but to know that there are different cultures in the world.

  15. Angel lin says:

    My daughter loves 两只老虎 (Liǎng zhī lǎohǔ/ Two Tigers)… the lyrics is so weird but she loves it!! Can’t wait to win one!

  16. Carol Neo says:

    Neede to learn as Mother Tongue is important for interaction and developement. Hope to win for him. My son love lots as is cute too.

  17. I want to teach my son Chinese because I don’t want him to lose his mother tongue. His favorite song is wheels on the bus.

  18. My children love Christmas songs that they sing them year round! Chinese is a huge part of our lives. Even though our parents have migrated here, we value our heritage deeply. Easier said than applied though T.T

  19. My kids like 兩隻老虎🐯.
    I hope my kids learn to love and appreciate their culture. I want to give them the opportunity to be skillful at a second language. Thanks for providing us with everything, Betty. I am so thankful to have come across your page ❤️

  20. Wendy chen says:

    My child’s favorite nursery song is Mei Mei bei she yang wa wa…..she gets a kick out of the fact that the birds are laughing ha ha…🤣😂. I want my child to learn Mandarin and be literate because I love reading and I beleive if she can read and be literate a whole other world will open up for her!

  21. My oldest son loves 頭頂長出大西瓜 in Cantonese!
    I want my kids to learn Chinese so they can communicate with their grandpa, learn the language of their roots, and connect with more people using language.

  22. Hi! I’m teaching my children Chinese because their father’s family is from Taiwan. He and I both also think Chinese will be an important language in the future.

    1. My baby’s favorite song is Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes.
      I want my child to learn Mandarin so she carries on her heritage and can talk to her grandparents.

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