How are you coping with distance learning? Don’t forget about the fun songs and community carpet time activities as well. As the music teacher I’ve been hosting daily sing-a-longs with my students, here are some of my favorite ideas and songs.
Materials can be found here: Camp Songs & Spring Song Sing-a-long
Like everyone else, everywhere else, I’ve had to change and adapt how I teach to accommodate the new restrictions put on learning. My typical classes are usually really energetic and interactive, which is touch via Zoom or Google Meets. I knew that all the other teachers at my school were doing the same, and I wanted to do something engaging and fun with the students to break up the monotony of their day. I remember when I used to be a camp counselor and we’d be stuck waiting somewhere I’d fire up a fun song or a game and that’s how it all began, with a Camp Song Sing-a-long.
I’ve been conducting these sing-a-longs at first once or twice a week, but now daily, and my students (and their parents) have loved it! It’s not groundbreaking or revolutionary but with so much change going on in other aspects of life, sometimes that’s perfect. I create a Powerpoint filled with lyrics, share my screen, get my guitar, and then we have a bit of fun singing together.
https://youtu.be/-TbZchRizG8?t=355 – Camp Song Bundle https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Camp-Song-Sing-a-longs-5406703
Rather than cover every single song I used (but I included all of them in my song packs) I wanted to focus on a few fun activities I thought were neat. With the Camp Songs, I found a fun Do-Re-Mi version of “Campfire Song” with interactive chime bells they could play. So I learned it on guitar real quick, we sang along and I had the students join in playing Do-Re-Mi from their at-home devices. It worked best with a touchscreen where you can just click the bells, but if students are using a computer with a keyboard that can be played with the corresponding 1-8 number keys. Try it out for yourself here
Spring Song Sing-a-long – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Song-Sing-a-long-5452773
With the onset of Spring, I found I had a bunch of materials already created, whether it was the Very Hungry Caterpillar, or my Spring Music Unit it was easy to transition to distance learning. We had a heavy focus on plants and growing, but probably my students’ favorite activity was the Parts of the Flower (science tie-in!). I’ve posted about this unit before (read more here). It’s to the tune of Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes. First we learn the lyrics, I’d play guitar and sing and student would mirror me, first slow then fast. Eventually I have students create movements to represent the different parts of the plants, Flower, Stem, Leaves, and Roots. We try out the actions and then add them to the song. Finally I’ll set the guitar aside and play the audio version of the song I shared above, while I participate in the movements as well. It’s fun and gets very fast, but the students loved it. It was so nice to get them up and moving around even it was just via remote learning. I’ll continue to update as I think of more fun sing-a-longs!