Saturday, April 9, 2016

Music is Magical in Pre-K!

Hi! I'm Ayn and I am a Ga. Pre-K teacher, serving 4 and 5 year olds in an inclusive setting. I share my classroom adventures on my blog, little illuminations.

We LOVE music in my classroom! We have music playing throughout the day and have several music and movement activities each day. Sometimes we are lucky enough to have special guests come to the class and share musical experiences with us. 

You may remember a post I wrote last year titled "Magical Meet-Up: When Worlds Collide, Magic Happens!" about having our illustrious Fairy Godmother of PreK+Sharing, Debbie Clement, come to our Pre-K class and share her music and books. It was a phenomenal experience and the children really enjoyed her visit!

Already this year, we've had several great musical experiences right in our own classroom! Today I'll share a few of these experiences here with you.

This fall, Mrs. Starcher, a local elementary music teacher and mom to one of my students, came to share some songs and stories with us. Many of the students in my class will have her as their music teacher next year, so it was a great way to get to know her! She read the classic children's book,"Caps For Sale" and sang much of the story, which brought a whole new level of enjoyment to the story, for both the children and for me!  She also played a couple of instruments, including the slide whistle (such a fun instrument!), and taught us a few new songs, including the Australian song, "Highway Number One" which became an instant hit and is requested by the students daily now!

We love to explore with sound, making patterns and rhythms with our rhythm sticks. Often, the children will use the instruments to add sound effects to a story I'm reading aloud. We like to play a copycat game where one student makes a rhythm and the other students close their eyes to listen, then try to repeat it.

While learning about nursery rhymes, we sang the song "Jack Be Nimble" substituting each student's name for Jack and each student took a turn to jump over the candlestick. A few times, we changed the action of the song from "jumping" to other actions like "skipping or hopping". 

We discovered a great song about "10 Apples Up On Top" done in the style of Jason Mraz and listened to it while we balanced beanbags on our heads. 

The kids frequently ask to hear songs that they hear "in Mommy's car". We've found children safe versions of popular songs like "Shake It Off", "What Does the Fox Say", "Shut Up and Dance" and their current favorite: "Watch Me Whip, Watch Me Nae Nae". They really can "bust a move" and have taught me a thing or two! ;)

Often, the kids like to get out instruments or scarves and play along with the music. I have a box in music center available so kids can make an instrument of their own if they wish.

We have recently changed up one of our favorites, "Boa Constrictor" by Peter, Paul and Mary. In the past, we've touched our own body parts (sort of like head, shoulders, knees and toes) but lately, we've used a small hula hoop with several children standing on the outside and one child inside the hula hoop. We move it up the child's body to go along with the song. The kids love it!

We have a wonderful little company that comes in and provides enrichment classes in our Preschool. They offer classes in computer (Computer Pals) , music (Music Pals) and signing (Signing Pals). I was lucky enough to book them for an "in house" field trip. We learned a song in sign language, learned some new music and movement songs, 
learned sign language color words and had a lot of fun! . Mrs. Julie and Mrs. Natalie are so talented and we are so lucky to have them! 

One of our favorite music and movement songs is "I Know a Chicken" by Laurie Berkner. We decided to make shakey eggs with some of leftover plastic Easter Eggs. The kids love making their own music and especially love to make it using their very own instruments! 

For the record, I should note, that I can not sing or play an instrument, but that does not stop us from making fun and music. We live it up in Pre-K and as long as we are all having fun, that is all that matters! 

 Stop by and visit me anytime at or visit the little illuminations fanpage on facebook! And be sure to check out PreK+K Sharing EEE!


  1. What great ways to incorporate music into their daily learning! Our students no longer go to Music each week like they used to so I have been looking for ways to incorporate music into our classroom more-thank you for sharing!

    Not Just Child's Play

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment! We squeeze music in where ever we can. It is such an important part of learning! Plus, it is just fun!

  2. You and your little's are always having fun!! I love that about you Ayn!!

    The Boa Constrictor is an old favorite of mine too! I've never seen it done with a hula hoop though! Going to try that with our munchkins one day soon!

  3. Great ideas for music making, Ayn, creative and fun! I'd like to suggest that folks NOT make egg shakers out of plastic easter eggs, however. From experience - if they break, they become sharp shards that quickly can cut a child. I've had it happen. Eggs are one of the few instruments I do not recommend making at home - buy they professional quality eggs from West Music, Rhythm Band or a music store. They cost a little more, but they are safe and sealed well.
    OR - try making a bottle shaker! Watch for my blog on April 16 "how to.."


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