This week we had 2 groups of about 15 children, mostly non British (and of these, mostly Chinese) except for one or two in each group. I wondered how the British children felt about this now that they were the minority, or is it just normal for them? Generally this session (the fourth week that we have come to the school- I missed one) the children were more confident, and as usual even the more reticent ones were joining in by the end of the sessions. The sweetest thing is when you ask a child who is not joining in to participate, and they say firmly that they can’t, and then a few minutes later you notice them doing it!
We used mostly repeated material from the previous weeks but with one new song/game – Fiona’s ‘Apple tree’ song which goes like this:
Apple tree, apple tree
Will your apple fall on me?
I won’t scream, I won’t shout
If your apple knocks me out!
The children sit in a circle and a toy apple is passed round in time to the beat. Whoever is holding the apple when the word ‘out’ is sung is out of the game, and in our version they got to go and sit with one of us and play instruments (such as drums and shakers) in time to the beat, which they really enjoyed and which helped develop their sense of rhythm.
We also repeated Liz’s crackerjack song (with actions) which again proved very popular as it gave the kids a chance to jump about and move around a bit which helps to use up their extra energy. Most of the time they are very happy to sit in a circle for half an hour which I am really impressed by – I’m not sure I could have done that when I was four! Most children took part and only one girl didn’t do the actions.
Our order this week was:
o Hello song – this time standing up with hands joined in a circle (Alison)
o Hickety Tickety name song (me)
o Have you brought… (Fiona)
o Apple Tree (Alison)
o Horsey Horsey (me)
o Cracker jack crack, standing with actions (liz)
o Goodbye song (liz)
Each of us got to lead a song twice which was good – I’m still feeling self conscious when I lead in front of the children and the other students and teachers, but at least I know that I can do it and get the children to respond when I ask them to sing something. Horsey horsey was great this week, with the children singing quite loudly, and we did lots of versions: a really quiet one, a loud one, and 2 versions with different instruments (claves and castenets) to imitate the horses’ hooves. From what I can tell and their body language, I think most of the children enjoy their musical sessions, as several are becoming very enthusiastic and one in particular is incredibly cute when he smiles J I’m not sure how our sessions contrast with the rest of what they do at nursery but I hope it’s a nice change for them!
In both groups there was one child who didn’t sit still and distracted the others by moving around, not doing what they were asked, and the teacher had to ask them to behave – I’m not really sure how to approach this, as I don’t feel that we are in a position of enough authority to react strongly to misbehaving. But overall, it was a very good session – I was completely shattered afterwards!