The Wonky Donkey hits Puketaha

A rather special animal visited the ABC Puketaha early childhood centre last Friday – the Wonky Donkey.

Craig Smith, the man behind the The Wonky Donkey book, song and video hosted storytime at the centre and the children could barely contain their excitement, said teacher Ruth McNaughtan.

Craig and his donkey have won a host of awards over the last few years, and there is some discussion that the Wonky Donkey song is one of the most best songs to come out of New Zealand … ever.

The donkey in question has only three legs, one eye, likes country music, smells really bad, gets cranky if he doesn’t have his morning cuppa and is always getting up to mischief.  He also “quite good looking.”

To put it another way, “… he’s a spunky, hanky, panky, cranky, stinky, dinky, lanky, honkey tonkey, winky wonky donkey!”  (Try singing that in a hurry.)

Ruth McNaughtan said even though the song is quite complex with lots of rhyming and a quick pace, the children are good at remembering the words.

“Most of them know some of the words and the song always encourages great participation with head nodding and knee slapping. Playing the song is guaranteed to get them up and moving which is great for our active movement initiatives.”

The children had made a display to impress Mr Smith who took a look around the centre prior to story time.

And in honour of the visit, the youngsters all sported a pair of homemade donkey ears.

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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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