Down by the bay
An old favourite with limitless scope for creating extra whacky verses!
Learn the song with Charlotte Law

Learn the song and invent your own funny rhymes to this fun camp-song






Activity ideas based around the song

This song is an old favourite and holds limitless scope for creating extra whacky verses! Each verse has the same opening: 

Down by the bay, where the watermelons grow,
Back to my home, I dare not go.
For if I do, my mother will say:
Did you ever see a…

The last line is followed by a comical pair of words that rhyme. Make a list of animals and then think up words which rhyme with those animals and try putting them together in amusing sentences. Remember the sillier the better! Here are some to start you off; llamas/ (wearing) pyjamas, a goat/ (steering a) boat, cat/ (dressed in a) hat etc.

Sing along and read this version, sung by Raffi which is accompanied by the book (illustrated by Nadine Bernard Westcott). If you can, print these rhyming cards (or make your own) and play a matching game. There are pictures to colour in too. 

Art and design technology 
Use balloons and papier-mâché to create your own 3D watermelon. If you are celebrating something at home, it could even become a piñata filled with goodies. Tutorials are available online. 

Introduce the maths concept of fractions with hand drawn images of watermelons that can be pieced together. Include 1 whole and its divided parts: 2 halves and 4 quarters.


  • Look at photos of bays (set back bodies of water). Find out the names of some famous bays in the UK e.g. Morecambe Bay, Lyme Bay. What is the nearest bay to where you live?
  • Find out where watermelons grow (the majority are grown in china), how they grow (on vines on the ground), what conditions they need (temperatures higher than about 25 °C) and the names of some of the varieties (such as Sugar baby, Sangria, Starlight, Jubilee and Starbrite). 

Food technology

  • If you can get hold of a watermelon, then taste one. It’s delicious and refreshing to eat. Add it to some of your other favourites and thread onto skewers to make fruit kebabs.
  • Keep the pips and try sowing them in some soil and putting them in a sunny spot to see if they grow. Remember to water them! 
  • Bake a watermelon cake. If you have an oven proof bowl you could make dome shaped one! A Victoria sponge recipe will work, with red food colouring and dark chocolate chips as seeds. Decorate with green fondant icing or make some buttercream with green food colouring. Divide in half to make two shades of green - a lighter and a darker colour - and alternate in vertical stripes to decorate. Have a look at this one for inspiration:
  • Create a watermelon pizza, using pesto as the base and tomatoes and olives as decoration. 
RPS Making Music Smart Teacher 2017 Teacher 2018 Besa Music & Drama Education Awards Music & Drama Education Awards 2023 Finalist