Do Your Ears Hang Low? A Fun and Catchy Kids’ Song

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Do Your Ears Hang Low? Lyrics

Do your ears hang low?
Do they wobble to and fro?
Can you tie them in a knot?
Can you tie them in a bow?
Can you throw them o’er your shoulder
Like a continental soldier?
Do your ears hang low?

Do your ears hang high?
Do they reach up to the sky?
Do they droop when they are wet?
Do they stiffen when they’re dry?
Can you semaphore your neighbor
With a minimum of labor?
Do your ears hang high?

Do your ears flip-flop?
Can you use them for a mop?
Are they stringy at the bottom?
Are they curly at the top?
Can you use them for a swatter?
Can you use them for a blotter?
Do your ears flip-flop?

Do your ears hang out?
Can you waggle them about?
Can you flap them up and down
As you fly around the town?
Can you shut them up for sure
When you hear an awful bore?
Do your ears hang out?


Do Your Ears Hang Low?” is one of those timeless, silly kids’ songs that sticks in your head long after you’ve stopped singing it. Chances are, if you went to camp as a youngster, sang along in music class, or ever joined a playground full of children, you’ve belted out the chant-like lyrics to this tune. With its call-and-response format, nonsensical imagery, and emphasis on being loud and rowdy, it’s no wonder little ones love this song. For parents and kids alike, it’s a whole lot of fun.


The origins of “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” are murky, with multiple variations existing across different countries. But this musical children’s rhyme has one thing going for it that makes it a true classic – it’s catchy, easy to remember, and never fails to get a laugh.

Origins and Meaning of “Do Your Ears Hang Low?”

While the exact origins of “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” are uncertain, many believe it emerged in the early 20th century as a popular camp song. Various forms exist, with slight lyrical variations, but the call-and-response format and repetitive, rhyming verses remain consistent. The tune is also remarkably similar to an old African American spiritual called “Do Lord, Oh Do Lord.” This has led some folk music historians to speculate that “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” may have roots in the spiritual’s melody.

At its core, this kids’ chant is about the silliness of imagining ears that fold, flap, and flip – all set to an infectious, sing-song rhythm. The lyrics are pure fantasy, rich with evocative visuals that tickle young imaginations. There’s no real hidden meaning or story; it’s just a playful song meant to make children laugh and interact. Depending how low those ears hang or flop, kids have endless options on how to act out the lyrics with dramatic gestures and pantomime. It’s easy to see why the chant caught on as a beloved camp song, where there’s no shortage of ears to inspect!

Fun Facts

  • “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” is sung to the tune of “Turkey in the Straw,” a popular American folk song dating back to the 1800s. So they share the same melody!
  • The chant is sometimes referred to as “Do Your Ears Hang Wide” or “Do Your Ears Flip-Flop.” Regional versions exist with slightly different lyrics.
  • It was one of many songs included in Tommy’s Tunes, a compilation of children’s songs published in 1917 to teach music in schools. This helped popularize it!
  • In the UK, a common variation is “Do Your Lugs Hang Low?” where ‘lugs’ refers to ears in Scottish slang.
  • The song is featured in the 1948 Disney cartoon Melody Time during the Pecos Bill segment. Generations have learned it from this!


Simple, repetitive, and just plain silly, “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” exemplifies everything that makes nursery rhymes and kids’ songs such a delightful part of childhood. They get us singing, laughing, and bonding with friends and family. Plus, chanting these rhymes together helps children develop literacy skills crucial to learning and language development. Much like “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes,” “The Wheels on the Bus” and other classics, “Do Your Ears Hang Low?” is here to stay on the playlist of childhood.

What memories come to mind when you think of this kids’ chant? Did you sing it yourself as a child, or do your own kids come home belting out the lyrics? Share your experience with this silly song below! And for more on the catchy tunes we sung as kids, check out my full list of popular children’s songs here. Music has such power to unite us across generations.

Link back to the parent post: As I discussed in my previous post on popular kids’ songs, music is an integral part of childhood. For the full list of songs, visit

Hey there! I'm Allen, but you can call me "The Corny Dad" from Canada. I have a wife and four kiddos. Yep, one's full grown, but they'll always be my babies. When I'm not doing something with my family or playing video games, I'm here, jotting down my bits of wisdom on this blog. From the fun stuff to the parenting chaos, I cover it all. Believe me, with the right attitude, parenting's a smoother ride and I'm here to help.

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