Member Brigid Finucane answered our recent call for Hello Songs with this complete lesson plan. It looked like so much fun, we’ve decided to post it in full.
Hey Children, Who’s In Town?
Chris Judah-Lauder’s Orff workshop (Sept. 2010), no known source
Concept/Skill: Echoes teacher-led movement, Follows body percussion patterns, Plays ensemble
repertoire with two to three simultaneous parts (with teacher support)
Materials: Rhythm sticks (optional)
● Teach simple body percussion pattern: pat-clap-pat-clap (quarter notes)
● Chant poem, asking to students to continue body percussion from beginning to end.
● Teach poem one phrase at a time, asking students to echo.
● Repeat, using comparatives to encourage expressive voice: High/low, fast/slow,
● Week One/Two: Class sits or stands in a circle and speaks poem together over body
● Tell children that the poem is a name game, and that everyone will get a chance to say their
name, but it must be said rhythmically without breaking the the body percussion ostinato.
Every time a name is said, the whole class will echo. Demonstrate with your name. Practice
with three to four students who sit next to each other in the circle before attempting with
● Repeat the poem every three to four students. Continue around circle until everyone has
had a turn.
● Week Two/Three: Pass out rhythm sticks and tap pattern: floor-together-floor together.
Repeat game. Ask student to tap the syllables of their name with their sticks as
they say their name. Intersperse the poem every three to four students.
● Week Three: “Secret song.” Clap the rhythm of the song without saying the words.
Ask the students what song it is. Pass out rhythm sticks and tap the rhythm together
without using words. Play game, trying to go around whole circle without stopping or
breaking the ostinato. Encourage students to use expressive voices, which must be echoed
exactly by classmates.
● Play while standing, using the words: “Hey Children who’s in town? Tell us your name and then sit
down!’ Continue around circle, without breaking the beat, giving everyone a chance to say
● In Second Grade, ask children to make up an expressive movement to do while saying their
name. Encourage children to create movement which are easily duplicated by others.
Hey children, who’s in town?
Everybody stop and look around.
Say your name, and when you do,
We will say it back to you.