It’s Rodeo Time!

cowboy

Howdy from Texas, and this time, I really mean “Howdy!”

It’s rodeo time in Houston and at my school, we always celebrate all the hoop-la with cowboy songs and square dancing. Western music is fun and perfect fodder for programs, so head on out on the trail as I share some of our favorite activities!
I love songs that work for all grade levels. She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain from Sharon, Lois and Bram’s Friends Forever album, is a perfect example. The vocal range and instrumentation is perfect. Add movement to match the fun lyrics and you have a wonderful cumulative song! The really great news is that it is available in a .99 download from Amazon or iTunes; just make sure you select the version from Friends Forever.
Movement Instructions: Sit. Pat thighs on steady beat when not doing the following motions:
1. ”Toot, toot!” (pull train whistle).
2. ”Whoa, back!” (lean back, pull on reins, throw feet into air).
3. ”Hi, Babe!” (big L to R wave with arms).
4. ”Yum, yum!” (rub tummy).
5. ”Scratch, scratch!” (scratch arm or leg furiously).
6. ”And she’ll have to sleep with grandma when she comes” (Lean forward, put hand to side of mouth like saying secret); then, ”Move Over!” (punch elbow out 2x).
7. ”And we’ll have a great big party when she comes” (flip flop claps on beat); then,
“Yahoo!” (Fist pumps with both hands, shoulder to up over head).
8. “Ti-yi-yippy-yi-yay!”  (Stand to dance on last section.  First 16 beats: cross arms and turn in place while gently kicking alternate feet.  Next 13 beats: circle in place and lasso over head.  Then, stand still and fist pump from shoulders>up and hold on final “Ya-Hoo!”).

One of our very favorite “cowboy” songs, Walk the Lonesome Trail is found in Cat Paws-Songs for Moving and Playing by Lee Campbell-Towell (http://www.mycatpaws.com). Believe me, this song alone, is worth the price of the CD! Here’s how we do it:

(P.S. Don’t miss the vocal development exploration of this activity!)
Mosey on over to the Cat Paws site and take a gander at the other cd’s. Kids really like to sing and move with her music!

If you are looking for a great cowboy part work song, Old Texas, fits the bill! We learn the song in 1st grade as a simple students echo teacher song and develop the part work more each year. By 4th grade, students are able to solo echo. Rip snortin,’ it is! I like the recorded version in Grade 3 of the old McMillan textbook series, Share the Music and hold on to yer’ Stetson, I’m about to share a wonderful techno tip.

Audacity is a free audio editing program (http://audacity.sourceforge.net/download ) that is really easy to use and is of great benefit to elementary music specialists the world over! Download this critter and learn to use it!  Anyhow, I used Audacity to create a version of the recording that added the echo part. So….I have back-up for both parts, if-in I need it.
Lastly, I thought you might be a-hankerin’ for a rhythmic dictation idea.

DSC00103

Ta-da! I change these boards and icons out to match the seasons. Students rotate through, two at a time, never more than two rotations per class session.

Sometimes, I hang an official Smarty Pants Award  by their work!

Smart Pants ED

Next week, I’ll share some square dancing rope tricks.

Ya’ll come back, now, you hear?

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