Tuesday, October 15, 2013

2 Things I'm Doing in My Music Room: 2/4 Tuesday Linky Party

It's been a hectic few weeks but I'm eeking out a blog post tonight to contribute to
Steph's 2/4 Tuesday Linky Party.

1. Old Brass Wagon - Song and Dance

I just got home from my annual 1st Grade Singing Games Night. 

It is a slightly chaotic evening of singing games and dance with 1st graders and their families. It's a wonderful night but a bit tiring.(Mental note: next year stick with the Danskos rather than the cute high heel boots!) 

The very last dance I lead the 1st graders and their families in is the song and dance Old Brass Wagon from the Book and CD Down in the Valley by the New England Dancing Masters, (otherwise known as the Amidons.) The students love the dance and sing along without any urging from me. This dance includes moving as a large group (circle to the left, circle to the right,) and also moving with a partner. The CD track includes guitar, piano, and sung dance directions. It was really lovely to watch the 1st graders share this dance with their parents. You know you can't go wrong with the Amidons.

2. Two Rubble Tum

Two Rubble Tum is a very fun song and game that is appropriate for this time of year.

I learned this song from Lamar Robertson at a ROCKE workshop many years ago. He was so animated when teaching us this song; it compelled me to use it in my classroom the next week and it's been one of my favorite Halloween songs ever since! My 2nd graders are practicing mi sol and la and they are in the preparation stage for do. 
Melodically, this is just what they need right now.

Why I love Two Rubble Tum:

  • speaking and singing solos!
  • call and response on sol la! 
  • one big, fat, emphasized do! (great for do prep)
  • suspense!
  • dramatization!
(This notated sing is also included in my Songs with Games Section.)

Game: Students stand in a circle. A solosit (the "witch") stands in the center. The group sings the first four measures, clapping their hands on "to" and bringing hands down to knees while bending knees on "buy." (This varies from Lamar Roberson's: make fists with each hand on "buy.")  

Students put their hands up to their hands up to their mouths and call: "Hey, Old WItch, what o'clock?" The witch points to a student in the circle who says "1 o'clock going on 2", then to another student to say "2 o'clock going on 3," etc. (I encourage students to use a scary, spooky voice.) 

The class asks the questions, ("Where are you going?") while the witch answers (solos) and pantomines the actions of going to the woods, picking up sticks, building a fire, and boiling water. For the last phrase the players close their eyes and covers their faces while the witch replies (in a scary. spooky voice), "To cook one of you.......CHICKENS!" and grabs on of the students in the circle.  The frightened students becomes the next witch.

This is such a fun game, the 2nd graders love the mounting suspense!

Thank you to Steph at Stay Tuned for the extra motivation. Don't forget to stop by Stay Tuned for more ideas from your fellow music teachers!


  1. Thanks for linking up! I LOVE the idea of having families and students out for a night of music and dances! Love, love, love it!

  2. Thank YOU, Steph! The Singing Games Night is much easier to prepare than a concert or performance and it promotes the idea of music for everyone. It's also my principal's favorite music event of the year!

  3. Tanya, Just curious- Do you do the "night of music" in place of a concert? Do you not put on a "concert" or performance other than that?