Chapter 13: music through songs and nursery rhymes Rhymes, poems and songs for classroom use Objectives: To discuss the development of children’s creative and emotional lives through music and movement To learn more about movements’ necessary role in the development of the brain. To understand how to incorporate music and movement into everyday classroom activities “Mobility is Central to being human. Our brain needs interaction and involvement to learn.” Dr. Robert Sylvester of the University of Oregon 13.1 Why include music and movement in your classroom As teachers you probably already realize that music can be an effective method of learning for both children with special needs and those who are normally developing. When teachers and caregivers talk about why they sing with their children they often say it’s “to stop the children becoming bored” or “to make the children happy.” But there is even more to it than that. This chapter provides you with some additional justification for using music in your lessons as well as some songs, rhymes and tongue twisters that you can incorporate. Music and Movement Activity: Think about the following questions: * Why should we incorporate music and movement in the classroom? * What are some opportunities you use every day to incorporate music and movement in your classroom? Jot down your answers on this page or in a note book. These questions should be answered as we progress through the text. Be sure to go back and compare your answers with those given here. Please note: portions of this text are adapted with permission from work produced by Leap Learning Systems According to National Association for the Education of Young Children music and movement can help students: Move with expression and rhythm Value movement and sound Develop listening skills Find their own singing voice Express emotion There are many goals and skill areas being addressed through music and movement. These include (but are not limited to): o Creativity, self-expression o Concepts including color, shape, rhythm, properties, textures, sizes, design, patterns o Muscle development o Eye hand coordination o Outlet for feelings and emotions Music happens to the whole brain. Scientists have found that it is not compartmentalized in certain sections of the brain like other functions. When young children move they are fundamentally developing their cerebellums (small brain). This part of the brain stores memory. The better developed the cerebellum, the larger capacity for memory. We teach our children a lot of information that requires rote memory i.e. the alphabet, counting. Why not strengthen their chances for success by allowing then ample movement throughout the day? If we don’t get them moving at an early age, once they get to grade school, they have to rely on higher parts of the brain to do what the lower brain should do routinely. Looking at brain research we see that children should not sit for extended periods of time. Think about how you can get your children up and moving throughout the day. Think about ways to incorporate movement to your lessons. For example: You can try telling a story and then having them act it out. Alternatively have them say the alphabet and write it in the air with their fingers at the same time. VSO Jitolee 2008 154. Deaf children from a school in Mumias perform a dance routine 13.2 Incorporating music and movement into your routine Even if you have physically disabled children in your classrooms, think about ways to modify the activity so they can participate. Children in wheel chairs are still able to chase and dance and do other activities their more abled body peers can do. 1. Begin each day with song to welcome your students to class. Some morning songs we have heard went like this: Good Morning Song Good morning, good morning, good morning how are you? I’m fine, I’m fine, and I hope that you are too Shake hands, shake hands, shake hands with the person next to you Shake hands, shake hands and say “how do you do? how do you do?” Hello to you Hello to you and what is your name? Hello to you and what is your name? Hello to you and what is your name? Tell me what your name is My name is __________, how do you do? My name is __________, how do you do? My name is __________, how do you do? Very pleased to meet you Look who came to school today Look who came to school today _(name of child)_, __(name of child)__ Look who came to school today, __(name of child)_ came to school VSO Jitolee 2008 155. There was a funny clown There was a funny clown in a circus ring Let’s see _____________ do his/her funny thing, let’s go Da da da da da da, da da da da da da, Da da da da da, da da da da da da da da da da da, hey! We’ve Been Waiting for You (by Bev Bos www.turnthepage.com) We’ve been waiting for you to come to this place, Waiting for you to come to this place Where ever you’re from, we’re glad that you’ve come, we’ve been waiting for you to come to this place If you want to _______________, we’ve been waiting for you And if you want to ________________ we’ll be waiting here too Where ever you’re from, we’re glad that you’ve come, we’ve been waiting for you to come to this place Allow the children to fill in the blank with their suggestions (e.g. sing, dance, draw, play, write, eat etc.) 2. Teach concepts like size, colour and number by using song, chants and rhymes. Try songs like: The Rainbow Song Red and yellow and pink and green, purple and orange and blue I can sing a rainbow, sing a rainbow, sing a rainbow too. One potato… One potato, two potatoes, three potatoes, four Five potatoes, six potatoes, seven potatoes more 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 One, two, three, four, five once I caught a fish alive six, seven, eight, nine, ten then I let him go again 3. Use songs to make transitions in your classroom. For example: When it’s time to clean up sing “clean up, clean up, everybody clean up.” At home time sing “it’s time to say goodbye, it’s time to say goodbye, I’ll see you tomorrow (or Monday!), it’s time to say goodbye.” In addition to the reasons given above, songs like those suggested help build your learning community. When children feel safe and secure in their learning environment we know they are better able to perform. VSO Jitolee 2008 156. 13.3 Activities that Encourage Movement: - Animal Dance Have children participate in an animal dance when teaching about animals. Don’t forget to emphasize those verbs (the action words) o Fly like a bird o Waddle like a duck o Stretch like a giraffe o Walk like an elephant o Run like a bear o Prowl like Lion o Leap like a dolphin o Swim like a fish o Hop like a rabbit o Gallop like a horse Note: When engaging your children in movement activities, be sure to reinforce to the children that there is no one way to move. Let them know that all types of movement are welcome and appreciated. - Draw the Music. Put on the radio or your favorite instrumental track. Give each of your students a blank piece of paper and a choice of crayon colors. Ask them to listen to the sounds. What color is the music? Once they decide, have them draw a picture of the music. Once the song is over, have them dictate what they drew and why they chose the color they did. - Musical Chairs. Gather together one chair per child in an open space. Put them in a circle with their backs together. Play some music. While the music is playing the children get up and move around the chairs. While they are moving take away one or more chairs. When the music stops all the children have to find a chair. Whoever is left standing is out. Continue playing music and removing chairs until there are only 2 children and 1 chair left in the game. Whoever gets the chair is the winner!! - Act out the Weather. For example if you were acting out a storm: 1. Separate the children into three groups. One group will be wind, another rain and the other thunder. 2. Have the group that will be wind rub their hands together briskly. They can even make wind with their mouths by blowing through tight lips. 3. The students making the thunder will stomp their feet on the floor. 4. For rain, have a section on students lightly pat their thighs. 5. You can orchestrate the storm by pointing to sections on children starting and stopping them at will. Here’s a nice pattern; VSO Jitolee 2008 157. 13.4 What about when the students in your class won’t STOP moving? You can call out “1-2-3 Freeze” and wait for the children to quiet themselves. Then give your instructions 13.5 Incorporating rhyme Research shows that a young child’s ability to rhyme correlates with their later abilities to read. In order to promote student’s rhyming skills don’t forget to incorporate nursery rhymes on a daily basis. Below are some simple songs and nursery rhymes that you may be familiar with. Five Little Ducks Five little ducks went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” but only four little ducks came back Four little ducks went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” but only three little ducks came back Three little ducks went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” but only two little ducks came back Two little ducks went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” but only one little duck came back One little duck went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” but none of her little ducks came back Sad mother duck went out one day, over the hills and far away. Mother duck said “quack, quack, quack, quack” and all of her five little ducks came back Five Little Monkeys Five little monkeys jumping on the bed, One fell off and bumped his head The mother called the doctor and the doctor said “No more silly monkeys jumping on the bed” Four little monkeys jumping on the bed, One fell off and bumped his head The mother called the doctor and the doctor said “No more silly monkeys jumping on the bed” VSO Jitolee 2008 158. Three little monkeys jumping on the bed, One fell off and bumped his head The mother called the doctor and the doctor said “No more silly monkeys jumping on the bed” Two little monkeys jumping on the bed, One fell off and bumped his head The mother called the doctor and the doctor said “No more silly monkeys jumping on the bed” One little monkeys jumping on the bed, One fell off and bumped his head The mother called the doctor and the doctor said “No more silly monkeys jumping on the bed” If You’re Happy If you’re happy and you know it Clap your hands (Clap –clap) If you’re happy and you know it Clap your hands (Clap –clap) If you’re happy and you know it, and you really want to show it If you’re happy and you know it Clap your hands (clap-clap) Variations: stomp your feet, shout hooray, do a dance, say hello, sit down I’m a Little Teapot I’m a little teapot short and stout, here is my handle, here is my spout When I get all steamed up hear me shout “tip me over, pour me out” Jack and Jill Jack and Jill went up the hill To fetch a pail of water; Jack fell down and broke his crown And Jill came tumbling after Miss Polly Had a Dolly Miss Polly had a dolly who was sick, sick, sick So she called for the doctor to come quick, quick, quick The doctor came with his bag and his hat and knocked on the door with a rat-a-tap-tap He looked at the dolly and he shook his head He said “Miss Polly put her straight to bed” He wrote on a paper for a pill, pill, pill I’ll be back in the morning with your bill, bill, bill VSO Jitolee 2008 159. The Itsy-Bitsy Spider The itsy-bitsy spider went up the garden spout Down came the rain and washed the spider out Out came the sun and dried up all the rain So the itsy bitsy spider, climbed up the spout again Zoom, zoom zoom Zoom, zoom zoom we’re going to the moon Zoom, zoom zoom we’ll be there very soon 5,4,3,2,1, blast off A word about tongue twisters: Many teachers cite the use of tongue twisters for working on speech with their students. If you are going to user these difficult sentences be sure they are appropriate for the child. Remember we want to meet the child at their level and push them a little. Choosing a long tongue twister filled with sounds they can’t produce is going to be frustrating rather than fun. Girls perform a poem about disability Other Notable Resources: Music & Movement; A Practical Guide for Teaching Young Children by Ellen Booth Church This book lists developmental expectations for music and movement according to age. It also details your role as the teacher in successfully fostering a child’s music and movement. VSO Jitolee 2008 160.
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