Can Anyone Help with a German Finger Play Starting with “Fritzen, kritzen”?

Sarah wrote asking for help with a German nursery rhyme…

Hi Lisa,

I’m hoping you can help me! My grandmother used to do a German finger play with us and we are trying to figure out all the words. It would start with her taking one of our hands and starting in the center, drawing a spiral on it with her finger. Then she would take each of the hand’s fingers and pretend to “pluck” them off. The words she would say while she did this go something like this (just a phonetic rendering of my memory – I know a smidge of German and they don’t seem to make sense to me!):

Fritzen, kritzen, fritzen, kritzen. [spiral hand part]
Guen danvus, guen danvus, guen danvus, guen danvus. [plucking each finger]
Und diesen ries der Kopf auf! Der fliet der for. [plucking the thumb last]

“Kritzen” makes sense to me because I believe it means “scribble”… but I can’t figure out what in actual German “guen danvus” could be. Then the last line is something about pulling a head off – and we think it has something to do with a chicken? I hope that helps.

Thank you so much for taking my email!


If anyone can help out, please comment below. Thanks in advance!

Mama Lisa

This article was posted on Monday, March 21st, 2022 at 8:01 pm and is filed under Countries & Cultures, Finger Plays, German, German Nursery Rhymes, Germany, Germany, Languages, Mama Lisa, Nursery Rhymes, Questions, Readers Questions. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply