Getting the most mileage out of traditional songs for literacy learning & more.
By Liz Buchanan
I’ve created my own versions of many traditional songs to help enhance early literacy skills, such as sounding out letter sounds and rhyming words. Here’s an excerpt from an article I wrote about five such songs, which will appear in the Fall 2013 issue of CMN’s journal of children’s music, Pass It On!
The finger play “Two Little Blackbirds” is a common nursery game & song. I turned it into an activity that encourages consonant-sound learning by making the creature and the names all start with the same letter. You can see how I do this song here. You can also download the song at the CDBaby site for my album, Once Upon a Tune.
Here are my lyrics:
Two little robins, sitting in the tree
One named Rob and one named Ree
Fly Away Rob, Fly away, Ree
Come back Rob, come back Ree.
Tweet tweet tweet…
Two little bunnies, sitting on the hill
One named Bob, one named Bill
Hop away Bob, Hop away, Bill
Come back Bob, Come back Bill.
Hop, hop, hop…
Two little fishies, swimming in the sea
One named Fred and one named Fee
Swim away Fred, swim away Fee
Come back Fred, come back Fee.
Glub glub glub glub, splash ….
Recently I expanded the song to include many more birds and sea creatures. This helped me add many more consonant sounds (and one vowel, for eels), as well as many more interesting creatures.
Two little penguins out in the snow,
One named Peg and one named Poe.
Waddle off …
Two little hummingbirds down in the valley
One named Hettie and one named Halley
Hum away …
Two little Whippoorwills call in the night
One named Will and one named White
Fly away …
Two little cardinals sitting on a pole
One named Cam and one named Cole
Fly away …
Two little mockingbirds, singing in the spring
One named Meg, one named Ming.
Fly away … (For chorus, have mockingbirds mock other people’s songs)
Two toucans with a great big bill
One named Ted and one named Till
Fly away …
Two little jellyfish, drifting down below
One named Jane and one named Joe
Two little dolphins, swimming on a wave
One named Deb and one named Dave
Flip away …
Two little eels, swimming by the reef
One named Ed, one named Eve
Slink away ….
Two big whales, lunching on some krill
One named Wes and one named Will
Got another creature? Another letter? Feel free to write verses and send them in!
Liz Buchanan is President of CMN. In order to read the whole article in Pass It On! which will be online in a few weeks, you must be a CMN member. Click here to discover the many benefits of membership!
Pass It On! http://www.cmnonline.org/pio.htm
Why join CMN? http://www.cmnonline.org/why-join.htm
Liz’s website http://www.antelopedance.com]