Bang, crash,sing and play!




The first music session was taught by Sue Nicholls.  The session focus was to build our understanding of the ‘building blocks’ of music.  The session started with warm-up exercises for both our voices and our bodies.     Sue showed us the warm up rap.  We were then separated into groups to work on our own warm up wrap to present to the rest of the group.  We had to use both our bodies and voices to make up a four line wrap to share.  The exercise demonstrated how quickly a small rhyme can be made up in order to engage both children and adults.  The next warm up song was a greeting to the tune of ‘frère Jacques’.   Sue demonstrated how any actions can be used in the song to create a welcome to include all children.

The next part of the session focussed on the ‘building blocks’ of music.  The elements of music are; pitch, duration, texture, timbre, dynamics, tempo and structure.  Sue taught us that a piece of music is not simply made up of one these elements but each one has it’s own essential part to role in creating a piece of music.  Pitch is how high or low a note is.  Duration is how long or short a sound is. Texture is the different sounds either played individually or played together. Timbre is the about the tone or quality of a sound whether scratchy or hollow.  Dynamics of sound are how the loudness/quietness or silence is used in a piece of music.  Tempo is the pace of the music how fast or slow the music is.  Structure is about how a piece of music is made up i.e if sections are repeated or echoed.

The rest of the session looked to be a really useful and interesting session but unfortunately I had to leave due to unbearable toothache!  Luckily for me I have very helpful colleagues who shared with me their experiences of the session.  Some of the session was spent learning about how to use different tunes and themes to make up own words to familiar tunes.  Sue also demonstrated how to use familiar fairy-tales or stories can be re-told or sung to familiar tunes.

The directed task linked to the session was to create our own song to a familiar tune.

I worked with a group of three other students to create a song to the tune of ‘London’s bridge’.

Click on the link to hear our song!

On the way to schoollondon bridge






Here are the simple changes we made to words and sung to the tune.

On the way to school I heard, school I heard, school I heard church bells ringing.

On the way to school I heard, school I heard, school I heard  lots of traffic.

On the way to school I heard, school I heard, school I heard a friendly doggie.

On the way to school I saw, school I saw, school I saw a lollipop lady.

On the way to school I saw, school I saw, school I saw a zebra crossing.

On the way to school I saw, school I saw, school I saw my school playground.


We added instruments to the tune to represent the noises of the things in the song.  This demonstrates how easily the words can be adapted to suite the children in the group.  The children could add their own verses to any of these simple tunes.  Some could play instruments to represent the sounds or sights they see on the way to school.

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