My 3 favourite songs to teach

In my opinion the best songs to teach music are always the fun songs.  Subtly teaching children how to sing melodies and using their voice as an instrument in fundamental in learning music.  When teaching preschoolers the nuances of pitch, rhythm, dynamics and pitch the easiest and most effective is songs with simple melodies and body movement.

My three favourite songs to teach children always bring a smile to childrens faces and most of the time the adults too!

Here are my 3 fav’s.

Paki Paki.

This is a Maori song and completely not in English and yet it is so so easy to learn.  I always start by showing the children all the different movements we are going to do and the corresponding word for that movement.

Paki Paki = Clap Clap

Kani Kani = dance

Huri huri = turn around

E Peke = jump

Hula = hula movement

Haka = haka movement

paki, paki, paki, paki tamariki ma
paki, paki, paki, paki tamariki ma

Kani, Kani, Kani, Kani tamariki ma
Kani, kani, kani, kani tamariki ma

Huri, huri, huri, huri tamariki ma
Huri, huri, huri, huri tamariki ma

E peke, e peke tamariki ma
E peke, e peke tamiriki ma

Hula, hula, hula, hula tamariki ma
Hula, hula, hula, hula tamiriki ma

E haka, E haka tamiriki ma
E haka, e haka tamiriki ma

Here is a link of me singing with my little kiddies, such a fun song!

Paki Paki

Oma Rapeti
Another Maori song about a little rabbit.
Oma Rapeti
Oma Rapeti
Oma Oma Oma
Oma Rapeti Oma Rapeti
Oma Oma Oma
Piko, piko, piko, piko,
piko, piko, piko
toro piko
Toro, toro, toro, toro,
Toro, toro, toro
Piko, toro

The hand actions can be seen in my youtube video
Heres the link for you to listen to Oma Rapeti

and my all time fav children’s song is Inanay, an Aboriginal lullaby.

Inanay Gupa wana (clap hands to the beat)
Inanay Gup wana
Ay ay ay oola
oola ay oola ay
Yippee yay yippee yay
Goo wanna Goo wanna (raise hands above head and clap semi quavers)
goo wanna goo wanna
goo wanna

Choo (spray fingers out towards child)

I have a link of me singing this song as well!
here it is Inanay

Theses 3 songs have all the elements of simple melodic tunes, repetition and easy hand and body actions for children to copy. I hope you enjoy singing them with your students

Happy Music making
Lola

 

Advertisements

What to look for when booking a music program for your Childcare Centre

Over the past 6 years of developing Rhythm Rumble I have had the opportunity to  pick the brains of every Early Learning Educator  I have had the pleasure of dealing with and here are the main reasons how/why they choose a Music Program.

Childcare Educator’s have a backlog of nursery rhymes, finger play and funny kids songs up their sleeves.  Their main concern when hiring a music program is they will hear the same songs they already know. Educators want to learn and be inspired by new ideas.  They need a music program to be innovative and teach musical elements beyond their own capabilities.
At Rhythm Rumble we are constantly researching new songs and music from around the world to teach children and Educators. Educators are able to extend on the new material and be inspired to try new songs and activities.

Secondly the Music teacher is paramount to the music program. If the teacher isn’t charismatic, energetic and great with children the children do not respond and consequently do not learn. An important element to understand though is the energy in the room needs to match the age group of the children. Such as when visiting the Babies Room the babies will not connect well to a teacher with high energy and a loud voice as compared to the kinder groups.  The Rhythm Rumble training is second to none, besides training the curriculum we also gain feedback from Educators and Children by sending the teacher out on free training classes specifically for that purpose and most importantly we listen to the feedback and work on a personal level to improve our approach, our musicality and techniques.

From the feedback we have gathered over the years we have learnt that repetition is paramount to young children’s learning, though it is a fine line between repeating a lesson to consolidate the childrens learning to boring the willies out of them.  Haven’t you noticed how children can watch the same movie everyday for 3 months and exhibit the same amount of enthusiasm EVERYTIME and then in a blink of an eye they won’t have a bar of it. At Rhythm Rumble we repeat each lesson for 3 weeks and move on to a different theme with new songs, games and learning outcomes. Singing the same songs for a whole year is taking the idea of repetition to a whole new level and really not necessary.

If you’re in the market for a new music program at your Early Learning Centre always ask for a trial class so that you can experience the music class and watch how your children respond. Hope these tidbits of information will help you.

Happy music making,
Lola


3 Ideas to keep the beat

I attended my childrens school concert a few nights ago, which was very entertaining and adorable.  Each grade got to perform a dance and was very creative.  But the music teacher in me noticed how many children couldn’t find the beat and missed their cue with the dance steps.

To keep the beat, seems such an easy thing to do but really it is a skill that needs to be ingrained from an early age.  Here are some ideas and songs that may help you help your child.

Tideo

This song encourages the child to pass to the child next to them.  During Rhythm Rumble music class we pass the tambourine on the appropriate beat and removes the randomness of passing the tambourine and makes it intentional.

Tideo, Tideo

jingle at the window Tideo

pass one window Tideo

jingle at the window Tideo

Pass two window Tideo

Repeat(pass the tambourine on Pass one window phrase

Chi baba – The Wiggles

We use this cute song and sing the chorus and

Pass the ball to each child for them to feel the beat while singing the song

eventually it progresses to children passing the ball uninitiated

Chi baba chi baba chi baba

enchilada goomba lagoomba

Chi baba chi baba chi baba 

my bambino go to sleep.

I’m a nut

We sing this song using rhythm sticks and tap to the beat and rest.  You can watch me sing this song I’m a Nut

I’m an acorn small and round

lying on the cold, cold ground

please pass and step on me

thats why I’m all cracked up you see

I’m a nut (repeat 3 times)

Singing and tapping or singing and walking helps establish a strong beat keeping in young children, try singing these songs and watch your children step to the beat.

Cheers Lola


Lullabies – Music for Baby

 

I have a new baby boy.  YAY!  He’s beautiful and enchanting and whadaya know he loves it when I sing to him.  He’s 2 months old now and when he likes something he smiles and one of the best ways to make him smile is to sing.

The most common repertoire for babies are lullabies and here are my top 5.

Inanay:

A beautiful Aboriginal lullaby sung about shooing away a goanna.  When i have sung this song in my classes children of all ages are mesmerised by it and it is certainly a lulling kind of song perfect to soothe any crying baby.

Inanay Gupawana

Inanay Gupawana

Ay ay ay oola

Oola Oola Oola Ay

Yippee Ay Yippe Ay

Gowanna Gowanna Gowanna

Choo

Goowanna Gowanna Gowaana

Choo

watch me sing Inanay here

Ah Kounelaki – Greek Song

My father sang this song to me as a child and although it isn’t a lullaby it tells a story of a cheeky rabbit digging holes in the garden and now I find myself singing it to my little boy.  Traditional songs from your childhood are a beautiful way to pass your memories and culture to your children.

Ah Kounelaki Koynelaki < Rabbit>

Xylo pou tha to phas < I’ll give you a little tap>

Mesa se xeno perivoulaki < if you come to my garden?

Tripes yiati tripas < whhy do you dig holes>

Min mou serfronis ti mitoula  < you screw up your nose>

Min mou kounas t’aftia < pull your ears>

Min mou klinis to mataki < and squint your eyes>

Ise san zografia < you’re as cute as a photograph>

Watch here

Good Night Sleep Tight

I wrote this little lullaby when I was a child myself, and now sing it to my children and they love it.

Good Night

Sleep tight

You’re a wonderful baby

Good night, sleep tight

have some happy happy dreams

Good night, sleep tight

you’re a wonderful baby

Good night

Sleep tight. Tonight

Big Yellow Moon

This is more of a poem, but children love positive thoughts before bedtime and encourages peaceful happy thoughts before sleep time.

Big yellow moon shines so bright, (Arms above head in circle shape.)

Glides across the starry night, (Arms move from left to right.)

Looks down at me (Hand shades eyes.)

Asleep in bed, (Hands together at side of face.)

Whispers, “Good night, sleepyhead.” (Forefinger in front of mouth.)

Big yellow moon, your turn is done. (Arms above head move down in front of body.)

Here comes Mr. Morning Sun. (Arms move above head in circle shape.)

I wake up. (Arms stretch out.)

You go to bed. (Hands together at side of face.)

“Goodnight, Moon, you sleepyhead.” (Forefinger in front of mouth.)

Rock a bye baby

its a classic so thought i’d include it sits also a winner when singing and rocking your baby to sleep.

Rock a bye baby on the treetops

when the wind blows the cradle will rock

when the bough breaks the cradle will fall

And down will come baby, cradle and all.

 

Enjoy

 

 


How To Teach 3 Year Olds Music

Music Classes have begun 2 weeks ago, and it has been a a great start to the year. Firstly I have hired another teacher so she has been attending all the classes with me which has been a massive help, as my belly is growing and its getting harder and harder to lift myself off the floor with any gracefulness.

We have been teaching the children about Rest & Play  and Fast and Slow and what a great way to teach children these lessons by using Trains, Planes and Car as the theme.

I had so many ideas for this theme it was easy to get carried away with, so I have narrowed it down and produced a lesson plan for 2-3 year olds, with a learning focus of teaching:  Rest & Play and Presto & Lento

To start the lesson and to get the children singing it is always helpful to use a familiar song such as:  The Wheels on The Bus

To teach children the difference in tempo, we sing “The Wheels on The Bus” in walking speed (Andante).  Then I ask the children to move their wheels slowly (lento) and start to sing in a slow tempo.  The focus the children have on their faces is so intense and can tell they are working really hard at keeping the slow tempo going.  We repeat the same verse, but now we are moving our wheels very fast and singing fast as well.  There are always giggles at this point.

A freeze song is a great way to teach Rest & Play, but I find they are always High Energy songs and not the best formula for conducting a calm and focussed music lesson for 2-3 year olds! Until I came across Lisa Loeb’s “Stop and Go” from her Album Catch The Moon.

You can check out her Album here it is worth a listen to

Next, we move to the parachute, where I demonstrate how to shake the parachute presto (fast)and Lento (slow) and rest(pull the parachute towards yourself).  The songs I sing are:

If You’re Happy And You Know It

If you’re happy and you know it, shake Presto

If your happy and you know it shake presto

if you’re happy and you know it and you really ought to show it shake presto

If you’re happy and you know it shake Lento

If you’re happy and you know it shake Lento

IF you’re happy and you know it than you really ought to show it 

If you’re happy and you know it shake lento

If you’re happy and you know it take a rest

If you’re happy and you know it take a rest

If you’re happy and you know it then you really ought to show it

if you’re happy and you know it take a rest.

And

Row Boat Row Boat

Row boat row boat go so slow (shake parachute slowly)

Row boat row boat go so fast (speed up the shaking)

Row boat row boat the waves are getting worse (shake the parachute fast)

row boat row boat pull it in reverse (pull the parachute towards yourself)

The children’s reaction to this lesson has been engaged and focussed, a mix of giggles and most importantly they have been educated in the difference in rest and play as well as understanding the difference of fast and slow while using the correct music terminology.

Hope you enjoy

Lola


The Power is in our hands

 

As a music teacher I have been thinking of lots of different ways to influence and inspire adults to include music education in their children’s lives.  I mean children naturally love music, but as those children grow into adults the participation rate declines, and adults are more self conscious about singing or the realisation of learning an instrument is actually hard work deters them from learning!

Eventually they don’t include music in their lives, which would be fine but these people have children and then these children don’t get the richness of a musical childhood/life.  I know, I know I’m making it sound very dire but there is research that supports singing to children improves their ability to sing in tune and this has to be done in the first 7 years of their life!  So there is only a small window of opportunity to increase children’s musicality  to its full potential.  Not to say you can’t be musical if you start later in life but your ability to sing in tune is hindered.  OMG! now you see why I’m freaking out.

So as a music teacher what do I do to encourage parents and adults in general to include music in their children’s lives.  Well the most obvious solution is to run dynamic engaging music classes that encourage parents to bring there children every week!

In this day and age lots of children attend Childcare centres, so I took the route of engaging the children through the centre and delivering an awesome music program, which has been an effective way to teach children.  But if you know children, they keep the details of their day pretty secret from Mum and Dad, so it hasn’t ticked the criteria of influencing and inspiring parents for a music education.

So my next solution was to write a children’s story which parents could read to their children but sneakily include a music education within.  Everyone loves books.  I love books, so do my children.  My little tale “Melody Goes To The Spring Fair” encourages the parent and child to clap and tap their way through the story, and to make it all about children, my 8 year old daughter illustrated the book too.

As I’m writing this, there is a news report on the ABC news which is  talking about how music is helping troubled homeless children and giving these children direction and is a light at the end of the tunnel for them.

The power of music is in our hands to pass on to children.  Why is music so important?  well that is probably a question for another Blog post because it deserves all the attention it can receive.

 

Cheers Lola

If you would like a listen to my story you can hear it here:  Melody Goes To The Spring Fair Book ReadingIMG_0249

 

 


Julie Wylie made me feel 3 years old again.

I travelled back in time to my childhood,  through a Julie Wylie workshop at the VOSA (Victorian Orff Schulwerk Assoc) annual conference.  And I loved it!

Through my endeavours to find quality music for my music classes I had come across Julie Wylie on iTunes.  The songs were always soft and instructional and perfect for teaching music for music purposes.  So I was super excited to be involved in a Workshop Julie was conducting.  As soon as the session started this fairy like lady wafted around the room singing a little tune to gather all the adults into a circle.  We all abided her gentle ways and it seemed initially as though she was singing for herself.  But I was wrong, there was a plan, and a very deliberate plan and we were all transported back to being 3 years old and participating in a Julie Wylie music class.

Julie is an Interntaional Childrens Award winner for her album “Bop it in a Rocket” and graciously agreed to be interviewed and she shared her inspiration for teaching music.  As a child Julie was influenced by a cousin who was a Concert Pianist and a musical Kinder teacher who instilled musical confidence.  She has had music in her life forever.

She tells a story of when she was a Highschool teacher and noticed so many children couldn’t keep a steady beat or sing in tune and taught a program with a group of troubled teens.   she would listen to their music (Heavy Metal) and analyse it with them. A student admitted that listening to their style of music made him feel anxious.  Being a great teacher she made a trade off by asking them to listen to her music such as Beethoven Pastoral Symphony and the children were encouraged to listen and analyse.  The result was the “most musical and moving things she has every seen.” The boys made their own instruments and performed music and re-enacted Beethovens character and turned their attitude and life around.

Julie is equally passionate about her work with The Champion Centre in Christchurch, which is an early intervention program for infants and young children with disabilities,  which Julie was asked to set up 23 years ago.  As a Highschool teacher she had to unlearn and relearn and with her Music therapy background with Nordoff Robbins has become a leader in this field. You can read more about it here The Champion Centre

Julie’s approaches her music classes with an overall plan to teach music elements, but not with a structured lesson plan as she allows and encourages the children to direct the music lesson.  Althoug every class involves Nursery rhymes around the rainbow ring and a Hello song based on the 5 note scale.  But, the magic happens in the last 15 minutes of the class where they have access to organza, drums, chime bars and their imagination.  Children are encouraged to improvise and compose their own music after being immersed in a musical playground.

So inspired by children’s musical ability, she played me a song she recorded that was composed by a young child in her music class and played on the Chime bars and was truly beautiful.

Julie’s style is a blend of music education and music therapy, as she wants music to reach and touch and build relationships. She is coming from the world of the child, listening and watching the children to effectively communicate through music.  The most important element to this approach is that children feel her love and at the end of the session they come and give her cuddles.

I learnt so much from meeting Julie Wylie, and being in her presence.  It was evident she truly loves her work and loves children.  If you haven’t experienced Julie Wylie’s music you must check out her website.Julie Wylie and do yourself and your children a BIG BIG Favour!

Big Love

Lola

DSC_0034