"Hickory Dickory" "Hickory Dickory" "Hickory Dickory" "Hickory Dickory" = 4 x 16th note triplets...
I’m from the school of “gub-er-dy, gub-er-dy”...Sorry to raise a necropost but if anyone finds it useful I go with
"1 an-a-poo-na-na, 2 an-a-poo-na-na, 3 an-a-poo-na-na, 4 an-a-poo-na-na"
or the more entertaining
"1 an-a-frigg-ed-y, 2 an-a-jigg-ed-y, 3 an-a-hig-ed-y pig-ed-y jig-ed-y"
I'm not sure it's the numerical aspect of "counting" that is the OP's concern. It's finding a vocal device they can use to help them learn to correctly subdivide the rhythm.
To me this is the most logical way. Counting (or rather, feeling) either the 8ths or quarter notes covers two bases: sometimes you want to feel the pulse over alternating hands (8th notes) and sometimes you want to focus on just your lead hand (quarters).If the tempo is too fast, most counting methods get cumbersome, so I just count 8th notes ("one and two and..."), but play a triplet on every count. Or, count quarters, but play a sextuplet every count.