Frog in the Meadow and Snail, Snail

As the school year at Lee Expressive Arts elementary school kicks off, I am introducing the Kindergarten, first and second grade students to their music “homework”.  Each student is expected to sing to three people (or maybe pets). Kindergarten is building repertoire and singing the song. First grade is beginning to read the rhythms and find the high and low notes. Second grade students can sing the music by site and track the music using sol and mi. Have fun sharing this experience! We are making videos of students singing all the videos for Lee families. If you would like a private link and you are a Lee parent or you would like for your child to sing for our homework videos, please email me privately.

September Music Homework: “Frog in the Meadow” and “Snail, Snail”
Frog in the Meadow

We have great fun learning this song with a stuffed frog which I toss out to the kids as we sing the song faster and faster and higher and higher!


When learning this song, we use a snail puppet to show us how singers open their mouths wide. We then play a sweet game where the players hold hands and follow the leader as they wind into a shape of a snail shell and then back out again. There tend to be a few giggles along the way as we turn our circle inside out and I pretend I loose the kids inside of the shell.

Ask Me To Sing Strategies

Sometimes it is VERY hard to sing in front of someone. My goal for your child is to help them find their courage! This should not be a painful experience. If it is hard for your child please offer these options!
*Can you speak the words to me?
*Can you say the words in your silliest voice?
*How about if you sing it to one of your friends in your class?
*Set up your cell phone for your child to record their singing voice  while you are not in the room.
*Sing to a pet, a stuffed animal a mirror
*Sing in a pretend Microphone
*Use the QR code on your homework sheet to hear the song or sing along with one of our Lee Singers!

Happy Singing! Mrs. Tummons

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Grade Book Organization – K-5 Marking Sheets

In classes and workshops I attend, grading and assessment in the elementary general music classroom is always a hot topic for discussion.   I think I am going to try to use the  IDoceo grade book app but first, I needed … Continue reading

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Creating Song Lists for the New Year

This summer I had an incredibly hard time taking my mind off of school!  Those of you who know me well are NOT surprised.

After finishing up my Level 3 Kodaly Certification at Evangel College, I spent a couple of weeks working on a retrieval system for songs for myself.  This is not a new concept and there are many out there but not everyone’s work for me and I wish to put in my own songs and books as well as a link to integration which is a constant at Lee Expressive Arts Elementary School.

This is a daunting task so I browsed through one of my favorite teacher stores on TPT and found this in Aileen Miracle’s shop.

Polished Planning {Creating Yearly, Monthly, and Daily Mus

It gave me the structure I needed to get started and motivated.  Yes, I could have created it by myself, but Aileen had it laid out so nicely already.  I was able to use her song list structure in excel and adjust it for each grade level.  In each grade, there is a column to mark the Kodaly objectives as well as our objectives for Columbia Public Schools.  After, the structure was set, I went by grade level, starting with my song collections from Kodaly and typed in only the songs I knew I would like to use in the upcoming years, then I moved to my 120 Singing Games Book, followed by my Gameplan Curriculum and lastly, the MusicPlay Curriculum.  I then sorted the songs alphabetically!  I NOW feel a little more organized for the year!

Next I will use this same set to work up my own concept maps.  These will be so helpful to show the practicum students from the university what the learning goals are in my classroom!


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Why Music Matters

Many school districts across the country are cutting the arts. Jack Stamp giving one of the best examples of exactly why music education is so important and belongs in our schools. Jack Stamp is a composer, teacher and music advocate. Currently, Dr. Jack Stamp is Professor of Music, Chairperson of the Music Department and Director of Band Studies at Indiana University of Pennsylvania where he conducts the Wind Ensemble and teaches courses in graduate conducting. Dr. Stamp received his Bachelor of Science in Music Education degree from IUP, a Master’s in Percussion Performance from East Carolina University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Conducting from Michigan State University where he studied with Eugene Corporon.

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Soweto Gospel Choir

Our students in second grade are so blessed. All five classes got to attend a Soweto Gospel Choir concert this past week! I think it is an experience many will never forget.

There was an anonymous donation of 100 tickets and our wonderful principal took care of the extra tickets and busing so all of the students could attend.  The seating was first come first serve but we were lucky enough to have front row seating.  The concert was AMAZING.  I was a little worried when we walked in and saw mostly teenagers in attendance but our kids really enjoyed it.  There was so much energy and the harmonies wove in and out magically.  My students were especially impressed with how the group works as a team.  There were many soloists not just one.  During their last song, “Oh Happy Day,” three of my second graders got to go on stage.  They all danced and one even got to sing in the microphone.  My students left Jesse Auditorium on the campus of the University of Missouri – Columbia vibrating with energy.  It was a great day for the classroom teachers, the students, and myself.  I will post pictures soon of students with parent permission.

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Song of the Week

I assign a song of the week each week (the same for the whole school) Each student gets a copy of the song (It is on a half sheet) and have to sing to three different people whom have to sign it.  Then all of the students turn it in.
I have a pocket out side my door for each classroom.  The book 150 American Folk Songs and Feierabend’s books have been excellent resources.  I have noticed amazing leaps and bounds in confidence and singing voices.  (We did take a break from song of the week during December and if there are short weeks we sometimes combine two weeks). 
Here are some of the songs that I have used this year.  I hope to make a book at the end of the year of all of the songs they have learned! – – their repertoire – –
 Oh, Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss (Western Play Party Song) January 17, 2012 
 Fais Dodo (Cajun) November 18, 2011 
 Grandma Grunts (folk song) November 01, 2011 
 Hickety Pickety (Traditional) October 03, 2011 
 Apple Tree (folk song / finger play) September 19, 2011 
 The Closet Key (Game Song d0-re-mi) September 19, 2011 
 Hop Old Squirrel (Afro- American Traditional do re mi) September 12, 2011 
 Charlie Over The Ocean (Traditional – Sol & Mi)

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Hello world!

I am a wife, a mother, and a music educator. When I see the successes of the learner it feeds into the desire to accomplish more. When I teach a subject, I learn more about it.  Students make me look at life in many different ways. Because music touches people from infancy to adulthood, I believe children should be involved in creating music. I want to show students the beauty of music and courage inside them, even if they don’t always see it in themselves. I want my classroom to be an exciting adventure but also a safe place. I want children to leave my class with more confidence, compassion, and enthusiasm for life and learning.  “Singing Dancing and Creating”  is a blog about children’s songs and music activities to facilitate learning, in fun and exciting ways. It focuses on my own experiences and reflections in my classroom.

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