In music class, I like to include holidays, seasons, & special events. The more I can make connections to what is happening around us, the more successful children are at making and creating lasting memories.
As we enter fall, we see many decorations, not only in classrooms, but also in our houses and around our neighborhoods. A pumpkin is something not only adults but children enjoy. They are bright and colorful in a season that tends to have a dull or dark color palette. Pumpkins are fun to carve, decorate, and even cook! How many ways can you use pumpkins this season?
In music class we are using pumpkins to sing songs, learn a new note, & clap a fun rhythm. After we sing one of our morning songs, I will immediately introduce the pumpkin. We will sing a song using a “pumpkin” to do actions and dancing! What fun! The song is sung to the popular tune “The Farmer in the Dell”. If you have pumpkins around, why not celebrate fall with a song: “The Pumpkins Are Here”
Roger Ribbit will introduce a new note: the dotted quarter note. This note is a little hard to understand for young children, but I concentrate on note recognition and learning the differences between notes. Children enjoy realizing that there are many different kinds of notes. The dotted quarter note looks very similar to a quarter note, BUT look closely… it has a DOT! This dot makes us hold the note a little longer than a quarter note. When we see a dotted quarter note, we say “Tah-ye”.
When we combine a dotted quarter note with an eighth note we say “Tah-ye Te”. This is hard, so Roger has thought of a way to help us say this new note and rhythm… we can say “PUMPKIN”. Yeah!
Now that we learned a new note, lets put it into a rhythm. Our new rhythm is: “I Like Pumpkin Pie!” Who doesn’t like pumpkin pie? As we chant and sing our new rhythm, we will also use our egg shakers to help us with our new rhythm.
To finish our celebration of fall and pumpkins we will dance with our egg shakers to a remix of “The Great Pumpkin Waltz” from It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
As we close with “Zipadeedoodah” we review everything we learned and realize how important fall pumpkins are… not only for fall celebrations but music also!