Pre-K & Kindergarten

Pre-K & Kindergarten

April: Pre-K and Kindergarten are busy preparing for our end of year celebrations. We’ve been working on our songs, dances and hand motions that will accompany the ceremonies.

February & March: We’ve been having a blast learning about rhythms, specifically the quarter note and eighth note. We practice bobbing our head or tapping our foot to the beat. We’ve been using egg shakers and dancing with colored scarves. Here’s a couple fun videos to clap along with that will help to better understand reading music:

Clap Along 1

Clap Clap Rhythm Lesson No. 1

Reading Rhythms for Kids

January: We’ve been talking about our feelings and how music can make us feel a certain way by using Major and Minor chords to make us feel happy or sad. Here is a video that illustrates the difference between the sounds of the chords: Major vs. Minor

A fun activity to illustrate this effect is called “Feelings in Music with Art”.

Draw a line down the center of a blank page and across the middle, forming 4 boxes. Label each box 1-4. Listen to 4 different songs that could evoke different emotions, and show how you’re feeling during each song by drawing a picture. I encourage the students to try and draw objects that represent their feelings as opposed to faces with emotional expressions. Here are 4 examples of songs that we’ve used in class.

Song #1: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Song #2: Can’t Stop the Feeling

Song #3: Phantom of the Opera

Song #4: Shake My Sillies Out

After the activity, encourage the student to reflect on how each song made them feel and elaborate on the reason behind the drawings. Compare the songs. Which songs gave similar emotions? Which songs were very different? Are there other emotions besides happy and sad? What are they?

December in Pre-K: Our preschoolers are working hard on a Christmas dance to the song Jingle Bell Rock. (click the link for the audio of the song)

Here is a written version of the dance moves that coincide with the song:

Jingle bell rock dance

Once we know the dance, I’ll be taking a video of the classes performing it to use in a Christmas Concert video. If you’d like your preschooler to be included in the video, please send in a video of your child performing the dance to jonathan.sheffer@dor.org and I’ll incorporate their performance into the presentation.

 December in Kindergarten:  The class is working hard to prepare a live streamed version of The Nativity. During the presentation, they’ll be performing hand motions to the song Away in a Manger. (click the link for the audio of the song)

Here is a written version of the hand motions that coincide with the song:

AWAY IN A MANGER hand motions 

Once we know the hand motions, I’ll be taking a video of the classes performing it to use in a Christmas Concert video. If you’d like your kindergartener to be included in the video, please send in a video of your child performing the hand motions to jonathan.sheffer@dor.org and I’ll incorporate their performance into the presentation.

November: There are so many things to be thankful about in November, and we’ve been taking the time to talk about all of the reasons. We’ve also been talking about Thanksgiving and what it means to us while reading books and learning songs about Turkeys and being thankful. Here is a fun song to practice counting:

10 Little Turkeys

This link has a fun turkey dance and some more thanksgiving songs:

Thanksgiving Songs Playlist

Here’s a link to a fun read aloud book:

How to Catch a Turkey

We’ve also been practicing being thankful with the song “Thankful and You Know It”

October: We’ve been working on a ton of fun new activities in preschool and Kindergarten!

We’ve been using the song Rise and Shine (click link to access song) to tell the difference between our left hand and our right hand. For extra help, put a sticker on your right hand to tell the difference. Another fun way is to notice that the Left hand makes the shape of the letter “L” when held out (fingers up and thumb out) in front of our face.

We’ve also started working on the song Five Little Pumpkins (click link to access song). When singing along to the song, we hold up our fingers to indicate how many pumpkins, 1 – 5. Here are the actions for the 5 pumpkins:

1st pumpkin: look at our watch and say “oh my, it’s getting late”

2nd pumpkin: point to the sky and say “there’s witches in the air”

3rd pumpkin: hands out to the side facing up and raised and lowered saying “we don’t care”

4th pumpkin: jogging motion while saying “let’s run and run and run”

5th pumpkin: raise hands in the air and say “we’re ready for some fun”

Then wave hands and arms back and forth for “ooh went the wind” and clap on the word OUT during “out went the light”.

Lastly, we roll our clenched fists around in a circle during the words “and the 5 little pumpkins rolled out of sight”

Here is a fun reading of the book Pete the Cat Five Little Pumpkins by James Dean, read by Ms. Becky

click this link for a really fun Halloween Freeze Dance

 September:  For the start of preschool, the students march and perform dance activities to the following songs:
Alphabet Boogie
The Walking Song
Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

After our morning dancing, we learned the “Hello Song”. Here is a version with Mr. Sheffer singing!

We read the Pete the Cat book “Rocking in my School Shoes” and talked about the 1st day of school.

 

Here is a fun autumn song from Seasonal Songs in Motion by The Learning Station:

Autumn Leaves are Falling Down

The Kindergarten students enjoyed the book, the new songs and dancing and marching.

We’ll be learning and working on these songs for a bit to get familiar with our days and months:
Macarena Months
Days of the Week

Click below for songs to help the students differentiate between their left and right hand:
Rise and Shine
Hokey Pokey

Here are 2 interactive videos to keep the fun going:
Freeze Dance
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt