In one class of kindergartners that I teach, we use a phonics series called “Morphun” that is specifically designed to be used with large plastic blocks (like Lego, but not). The children actually build models of the words that we learn in class, like alligators, penguins, or cars. We hold the class in the kindergarten’s gym, so there is lots of space to spread out and have a good time. The end of class, though, could sometimes prove a challenge because children being children, they didn’t want to stop doing something they thought was really fun in order to do something that to them would likely be less fun.
So I followed Devon Thagard’s example after reading his blog entry titled “Why should songs be used MORE in the Young Learners classroom“ at the OUP ELT Global Blog and started playing the “Clean Up!” song at the end of class. This is track 7 of Super Songs 1 by Super Simple Learning. Click on the song page to hear the song for yourself and read the lyrics. There are teaching tips on the site as well.
Here you can see Devon (and others) with some children cleaning up:
Back to the story, the children still weren’t exactly pleased about class being over, but they accepted that it must be so since the catchy song being played on the CD player was telling them so. Soon afterwards the children began recognizing the “Clean Up!” song upon hearing the first few notes and the look of shock (“Uh-oh, time’s up) on their faces is still priceless. This did not make for a glum atmosphere, though, because the focus of the children soon went to the song, which they would merrily sing all the way back to their classroom.
Money well spent.
- Super Simple Songs: I like Something Blue
- Super Simple Songs: The ABC Chant
- Super Simple Songs: Make A Circle
- Super Simple Songs: The Wheels on the Bus