Thinking Rhythm

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear l Barefoot Books - LadyD

You can teach children how to chant, speaking in rhythm to a steady beat. Kids learn to clap, tap, snap. march and swing. What is rhythm, you ask? Rhythm, rhythm, rhythm; the pattern of the beat. Long sound, short sound, no sounds. If you're interested in learning more about note values and such, you might want to read my article, Rhythm-in-Music.

Here's a song we have used for Preschool/ Kindergarten class.

Lunchtime Rap

(Sung to: Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear)

Children, children, it's time to eat,
Go wash your hands and have a seat.
Serve the food and eat it up,
                                                   C      F
Talk with your friends and then clean up.


* Counting rhythm
* Counting and clapping
 * unit (counting the length of each note)
 * metric (counting the number of beats in each measure)

Rhythmic Words

I use rhythmic words and pictures to help children learn rhythm counting.

For Example:

Quarter note: Bus, Train, Truck, Walk, Dog, Tree, Bird
Half note: Wagon
Whole note: Whole-note-hold-it
Eighth note: Moun-tain, Race car, Muff-in, Chee-tah, Li-on, Mon-key, Po-ny, Rain Drops
Sixteenth note: Col-o-ra-do, Mo-tor-cy-cle
Triplet: Basketball, Pineapple, Blueberry

Books About Rhythm

1. 101 Rhythm Instrument Activities for Young Children

The perfect book to introduce rhythm instruments to young children! Children make the sound of the ocean waves using shakers, pretend to be a train using sand blocks, create a rainstorm with rhythm sticks, and perform circus tricks with jingle bells. Plus, they learn to play the instruments along with their favorite songs. 101 Rhythm Instrument Activities is perfect for parents, early childhood teachers, and music teachers who work with toddlers through age 6.

2. Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb (Bright & Early Board Books)

Illus. in full color. A madcap band of dancing, prancing monkeys explain hands, fingers, and thumbs to beginning readers.

3. Maracas (Row, Row, Row, Your Boat) (Rockin' Rhythm Band Board Books)

Everyone's invited to join the Rockin' Rhythm Band! Shake your Maracas as you sing along to the tune of 'Row, Row, Row your Boat!'. Making music has never been so much fun!

4. Together in Rhythm: A Facilitator's Guide to Drum Circle Music (Book & DVD)

Create compelling rhythm-based events for groups of all kinds! Learn the art of drum-circle facilitation from master percussionist, educator and award-winning drum circle facilitator, Kalani. The interactive DVD includes activities, games, an instrument guide and inspirational interviews. Participants will also gain essential life skills, including creative thinking, active listening, teamwork, self-direction and communication. This title has been awarded by iParenting Media as one of the "Outstanding Products of 2005."

I use rhythm sticks during a short part of the student's piano lesson. We use rhythm instruments in group lessons and love to play rhythm games. Do you have a favorite? I like Rhythm Bingo. Oh, be sure and check out my Rainbow Turkey Rests.

Happy Reading!

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me.” -- C. S. Lewis
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Barefoot Books-LadyD

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