There were only two of the 8 children in costume, but that didn’t prevent everyone from having lots of ghoulish fun. Those children, and the three adults in attendance were frighteningly enthusiastic as they sang along to “The Very Scary Spider”, “I Shut the Door”, and “5 Little Pumpkins”. They also came up with some yucky things for the witches brew when we sang “I’m a Crazy Witch”. We danced to “The Monster Mash”, and acted like creatures of the night while moving to “Bats are Sleeping”. The evil spirits were kept away with the help of the Wind Chimes, our Instrument of the Week. And the day had a thrilling conclusion when everyone danced with the parachute.
When I entered the child care centre at Jessie’s last week I was immediately engulfed in a small crowd of costumed staff, moms and children who were celebrating Halloween together. Jessie’s hosted a special afternoon of Halloween activities and Rainbow SongsFoundation kicked it all off! We had a much larger crowd than usual, which was wonderful (though much noisier as well)! Our all-Halloween repertoire was very, very, well received as we sang about getting dressed for Halloween, mentioned all our costumes in Old MacDonald (on this farm there was everything from a lion to superman) and howled like wolves! The moms really got into listing gross things we could add to our witches brew, including boogers, eyeballs and cobwebs, and everyone did a wonderful dance and movement version of the Monster Mash. It was a very spooky, silly and enjoyable class!
We had a great Halloween celebration! The baby in class looked absolutely adorable in her Halloween costume, and instantly put a smile on everyone’s face. The smiles kept going as we sang spooky songs, starting with finger plays featuring creaking doors, pumpkins big and little, and very scary spiders. Halloween wouldn’t be complete without singing about dressing up and what we were all dressed up as. We came up with our own spooky ideas with ingredients for our scary witch’s brew. Along with the creepy sounds of the thunder tube, we created sound effects with our voices with If You’re Scary and You Know It. We had fun dancing to a Halloween classic, The Monster Mash. I love how grown-ups can’t help but be caught up in the Halloween fun themselves!
Once again we had even more people join us for singing today! School classes at Jessie’s Centre (for those mothers who still want to work toward high school credits) were in session today, so a number of new moms were able to join us. A couple of the moms are pre-natal, but still joined in as a means to start learning some music to sing with their babies once they arrive. Everyone had either a real baby or a baby doll with them to do all the actions with – it was wonderful! Today a big focus was placed on going over lyrics and actions as a way to get to know one another and make sure everyone felt comfortable in the circle, whether or not there was a real baby in front of them. Sometimes getting right into the action is hard for these young women if they don’t have a child to work with – they feel silly or out of place – so ensuring that everyone feels as safe and as comfortable as possible is important. I’m sure that as we continue to sing with one another in the coming weeks we’ll be able to break down some of those barriers and really sing out!
We had a smaller crowd this week, but just as much fun. There were 11 children and six adults singing and clapping this week. While it’s nice to have newcomers – five – it’s worth noting that two children and one adult have been there all four weeks. Songs this week includedSticky Bubblegum, Two Little Blackbirds, Alice the Camel, and What are You Wearing? We also did some marching to Mama Don’ Allow– with the appropriate warning issued – and Oh When the Kids. Everyone was fascinated by the Rainstick, our Instrument of the Week, and rocked in the jam session, which included Jamaica Farewell. The Good-bye song was done with several kids in my lap. It was easier for them to do the ‘mob’ hug at the end.
This week we learned some Halloween songs to prepare for a spooktacular Halloween class next week. We sang about pumpkins and very scary spiders before leaving Halloween behind…until next week!
There were several new participants, so those who already knew the songs sang extra enthusiastically, and those who just joined learned as we went along. We did songs with a lot of actions as well as some lap rides, which are always a favourite of the babies, though tiring for the moms as the babies grow! All the babies loved the parachute as the colours and motion dazzled them.
Blog Highlights: All the children were very excited to learn some new Halloween songs. We started off doing some finger counting songs before launching into Five Little Pumpkins“. Next we sang one of my favourites, I’m Dressing up for Halloween, complete with loud and energetic howling. Nothing like 18 children howling away at the same time. We also sang the game song, I’m a Little Witch. The children absolutely loved adding their own special ingredients in to the stew and stirring it up with a big wooden spoon. After the Halloween portion of class was over, I took the children on a trip to Jamaica. We did a series of transportation songs before landing on the Caribbean island singing Baby Shark andJamaica Farewell.
Our group was a little bigger this week than last which made singing together all the more merry! We kept up with our songs that involve sign language, like the Hello Song, the Rooster Song and Clean-O. Our Instrument of the Week was a big hit with our three differently-sized frogs. I’m glad others enjoy the frogs because they are definitely my absolute favourite instruments to play with at Rainbow SongsFoundation! We did the song Little Green Frog, and giggled as we stuck our tongues out and sang our “la di da di da.”
I reviewed some Halloween Week material (I Shut The Door, Pumpkin Pumpkin, Five Little Pumpkins, and I’m Dressing Up For Halloween). I also taught them a funny version of The Itsy Bitsy Spider that is sung in the voice of Count Dracula, The Very Scary Spider.We then sang some animals songs together, Listen To The Water, Little Green Frog, Baby Shark, Six Little Ducks, and Elephants Marching.
At this point in time we had several people going in and out of the class so I tried to keep things focused by Rolling the Ball, which helped slightly, but ultimately decided that jamming would be a better way of getting the group to sing together, rather than bringing out theinstrument of the week. We sang Stand By Me, Three Little Birds and I Feel Good. Luckily my plan worked and by the end all the moms were singing and dancing! Whew! Sometimes it can be a lot of work to get them there but it’s always worth it in the end.