Today, I showed each of my classes the crack at the bottom of my guitar. I stated that this is what happens when people play and touch the guitar without asking. The guitar has a crack and needs to be fixed before students can play it. One student stated, “The guitar has a boo-boo. It needs a band-aid.” Another student kissed it to make the guitar better. Several students said to get tape and glue it back together. In each class I showed my guitar, there was always one student who pointed to another student and said they did it. (Hilarious!) There were several students in each class that shook their heads and said they did not do it with their hands up. (Not guilty!) In all honesty, I actually don’t know how my guitar got its crack. All the students play it throughout the week and sometimes they run into it while it sits in its stand or on the floor. Sometimes it drops out of its stand. Students are now more careful around the guitar.
The Ducks had a great sensory time with touching, squeezing, and shaking the stocking full of “wingle bells” as one student called it. They said it was soft, hard, and felt a ball. Hopping and shaking at the same time was too much coordination for them and most of them sat down during my song and shook their bells instead. Like most students, they sang the first few lines to “Jingle Bells” and their loved to say the “Hey” in the turn around part. 100% participation today!
The Fireflies and Owls enjoyed separate martial art classes with me today. Both in their second martial arts class, they are developing body awareness, coordination, and focus. After learning/reviewing stances, punches, kicks, blocks, breathing, kiais, animals, and stretching on their small tape marks, each student had a turn in the middle of the group to demonstrate 5 seconds of anything we’ve done in martial arts. It was really affirming to see what students remembered, felt comfortable doing, and their ability to perform in front of their peers something they just learned. Some even made up their own spinning moves. Pretty fierce students!
The Dragonflies had another chance to rehearse on stage, standing on their markers. There were a couple of students who started crying and did not want to be on stage because they all wanted to stand next to one popular student. With help getting onto stage, they were all reminded that everyone is still friends and the spots are only for right now. Then once the music started, they focused on singing and doing the hand signs. Music was a great distraction! There are many strong singers who have great stage presence!
The Owls have martial arts, a five minutes break, and then music class. During that five minutes break, they went outside to play Tag with their para-educator. They were smiling, laughing, and having a grand time. You could hear them squealing from inside the music room. When I went outside to tell them it was time for music, they came running and asked if they could be rewarded with tag if they were good in music. I said if they sang hello, practiced our song, did our stocking activity, did the listening activity, and sang good-bye well, I would let them out five minutes early to play Tag as a reward. They were well-behaved in practicing our song, had good-humored in guessing what was inside the stocking, and were focused in relaxing/listening to music. Their good expected behavior was rewarded with five minutes of Tag. You’re it!
On Thursdays, I go to Enrichment to see the Butterflies for 15 minutes of music. These are 15 preschool students of different levels in the after-school program. I usually do the same activities from our week music class to reinforce what we learn. I brought the stocking that they have all seen and they loved to touch it, squeeze it, and shake it again. After a minute they realized it was bells again. They were still as excited to play them and sing “Jingle Bells.” There were two students who continuously ask to play the “Train Song” though they were happy with today’s music activity. The train will come another day.
The school combines four Post Oak classes (oldest students) to make The Parish Choir. We have a 30-minute choir rehearsal on Thursday to learn songs, sing as a group, and have fun moving our bodies. They learn by listening to me sing, they sing, and read lyrics on a large chart with visual pictures. Mitch, the art teacher and the choir accompanist, and I practiced our “Havah Nagilah” piano duet while students walked it. Some students did some line dancing, one did a solo, and others moved their bodies to the music. We sure warmed them up with our quick dancing song! Then we had our first rehearsal as an entire choir for our song, “A Holiday of Music,” and they had a lovely jubilant vocal quality. The words in the song repeat quite a few times so it made it easier to focus on the melody’s wide range. We sang through the entire song of A section, repeat A section, and tag, which is a new road map for them as they have only learned ABAA,tag. We are performing in two weeks at the Winter Sing-A-Long.
What a fun active day to start December! Happy new month!