Friday, November 9, 2018

Veteran's Day Assembly

Congratulations to our Memorial School Chorus for a great job at the Veteran's Day Assembly!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Mama Goonie Bird

Image result for seven chicks clipart

First Graders learned the song "Mama Goonie Bird" to help them practice keeping the beat.  Beat competency is such an important skill for students, and we spend a lot of time on it in our First Steps in Music curriculum.  So many advanced musical skills build off of the ability to keep the beat.

Ask your child to sing the song for you.  It goes like this: 

Mama Goonie Bird, had seven chicks,
Seven chicks had Mama Goonie Bird.
And they couldn’t walk,
and they couldn’t talk,
But they all could go like this!
Spoken: One wing!


Repeat the song, adding

“Both wings!”, “Add your foot”, “both feet”, “add your head”, “sit down”

As students add each body part, they should continue singing, keeping the beat with their "wings" or feet. This is a skill that takes practice, especially when adding multiple movements at once. Try it with your child!

Click the link below to hear a recording of Ms. Giguere's class singing this song.

Mama Goonie Bird

Below is a great recording of this song, sung by Jill Trinka. We moved to this recording in class after the students had learned the song well.


Did your child sing this song to you from their "Ask Me" sheet?  Let Mrs. Hiltz know by filling out this form.  Your child will earn a sticker!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Miss White

Image result for ghost eating toast

2nd graders continue their study of music literacy by working on decoding rhythms in duple meter.  They have moved on to decoding unfamiliar songs and rhymes - that is decoding the rhythm after only hearing the rhyme once.  This is more of a challenge because they have not had the chance to internalize the rhyme.  They need to decode on the spot.

Just in time for Halloween, students decoded the unfamiliar rhyme "Miss White."  The silly lyrics are below:


Miss White had a fright
In the middle of the night.
Saw a ghost, eating toast,
Halfway up the lamp post.

Hear Mrs. Curci's class recite this rhyme by clicking the link below.


Students decoded the rhyme line by line using our duple meter rhythm syllables. Now that they are able to decode even unfamiliar patterns that they hear, students are ready to see what these rhythms look like! We will begin that step soon!

Here Mrs. Curci's class decode the whole rhyme using rhythm syllables (with only one mistake) by clicking the link below.

Miss White Rhythm

Did your child share "Miss White" with you from their Ask Me sheet? Let Mrs. Hiltz know by filling out this form and earn a sticker!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

My Hat



1st Graders are working hard to learn the song "My Hat."  This song has been a real challenge for students, but they are starting to catch on!

First, students sing the song with all of the words and no motions.  See the words below and sing with your child.

My hat it has three corners,
Three corners has my hat.
And had it not three corners,
It would not be my hat.

After singing all of the words, we took out the word "my" and replaced it with a motion (point to yourself).  We sang all of the rest of the words, but used inner hearing to only hear, not sing, "my."  Next, we took out the word "hat" and replaced it with a motion, then "three" and then "corners."  By the end, we were singing almost none of the words out loud!  The last time through the song, sing all the words and all the motions.

This song might take some practice.  We spent some time on it in music class, but it is difficult to remember which words are to be sung, and which words are to be silent.  Practice together until you get it! 

Hear Mrs. Larson's 1st grade class sing the song with all of the words by clicking the link below.

My Hat

Did your child sing you this song using their "Ask Me" sheet?  Let Mrs. Hiltz know by filling out this form and your child will get a sticker!

Monday, October 29, 2018

The Leaves Are Green


Kindergartners just learned a new autumn circle game!  Circle games are an important way for children to learn to work together and participate in musical play.

This circle game is called "The Leaves Are Green."  Students walk in a circle, holding hands, until the very end when they all fall down together!  We talked about the way leaves fall from trees and modeled it with our bodies to make sure we were all falling safely and gently like leaves.

The words to this song are:

The leaves are green,
The nuts are brown.
They hang so high,
They won't fall down.
Leave them alone 'til frosty weather
And they'll all fall down together!

Play this game with your child.  We played with the whole class, but you only need two people to play!  Vary the speed every time and try changing directions!

Hear Mrs. Armington's class sing this song by clicking the link below:

The Leaves Are Green

Did your child sing this song to you from their "Ask Me" sheet?  Let Mrs. Hiltz know by filling out this form.  Your child will earn a sticker!

Monday, October 22, 2018

Purple Light

Image result for cowboy clipart

2nd Graders are learning a new cowboy echo song called "Purple Light."  See the lyrics below: 


Purple light (purple light) in the canyon (in the canyon)
That’s where I (that’s where I) long to be (long to be)
With my three (with my three) good companions (good companions)
My knapsack, my pony and me.


Whippoorwill (whippoorwill) in the willer (in the willer)
Sings a song (sings a song) a melody (a melody)
For my three (for my three) good companions (good companions)
My knapsack, my pony, and me.


No more cows (no more cows) to be ropin’ (to be ropin’)
No more strays (no more strays) shall I see (shall I see)
Just my three (just my three) good companions (good companions)
My knapsack, my pony, and me.


Gonna hang (gonna hang) my sombrero (my sombrero)
From the limb (from the limb) of a tree (of a tree)
Over my three (over my three) good companions (good companions)
My knapsack, my pony, and me.


Echo songs are important for students to gain independence in singing. They need to memorize only a short piece of a song and sing it back. We start with students all echoing the leader as a group, and then move into solos - each student echoing a line individually. Can your child lead you in the echo song?

We thought a lot about the lyrics of this song, challenging students to infer what the job of the person in the song is (a cowboy/girl). We also talked about some "wh" questions to go with the song: who?, where?, and when?

Hear Mrs. Curci's class sing this echo song with Mrs. Hiltz by clicking the link below.

Purple Light

Did your child sing this song with you from their "Ask Me" sheet? Let Mrs. Hiltz know by filling out this form. Your child will earn a sticker!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Five Little Leaves



For this fall fingerplay, preschoolers practiced speaking with expression at the same time as they practiced basic subtraction skills.

Ask your child to share this fingerplay with you, using the lyrics below:

Five little leaves so bright and gay,
Were dancing about on the tree one day.
A wind came blowing through the town,
And one little leaf came tumbling down.

(Practice subtraction... How many leaves are left?)

Four little leaves so bright and gay,
Were dancing about on the tree one day.
A wind came blowing through the town,
And one little leaf came tumbling down.

Three little leaves so bright and gay,

Were dancing about on the tree one day.
A wind came blowing through the town,
And one little leaf came tumbling down.

Two little leaves so bright and gay,

Were dancing about on the tree one day.
A wind came blowing through the town,
And one little leaf came tumbling down.

One little leaf so bright and gay,

Was dancing about on the tree one day.
A wind came blowing through the town,
And one little leaf came tumbling down.

Hear Mrs. Beaudry's class recite this rhyme with great expression by clicking the link below!

Five Little Leaves

Did your child share this rhyme with you from their "Ask Me" sheet?  Use this form to tell Mrs. Hiltz that your child is singing at home!