For our Preschool Music & Active Movement class this week, we focused on penguin songs!
Here is the outline I used to teach our 45-minute class for 3-4 year olds. In addition to our preschoolers, we usually have a couple younger and older brothers and sisters join in too. 😉
1- Gathering time: play with musical instruments bin. This week I also brought out a set of handbells for the kids to play with.
2- Welcome Song.
3- When I Sing LaLaLa by Janeen Brady. We do this and the welcome song with puppets:
4- I introduced the theme, we talked about other animals that live in cold places, and we started with the Penguin Dance song. I like to start with a song that gets the kids moving a lot because it helps everyone relax and focus at the same time. For the Penguin Dance song, we listened to the words and acted out any actions we could hear:
5- We talked about how penguin moms lay eggs and penguin dads carry their eggs around on their feet, under their feathers, until they hatch. I passed out the shaker eggs and we all tried to carry eggs on our feet like a penguin dad. We also “played” the eggs our favorite ways and practiced “musical eggs” and “quiet eggs.” Then we shook our eggs to this shaker egg song:
6- I collected the shaker eggs and passed out rhythm sticks. We practiced “musical sticks” and “quiet sticks,” and everyone copied my clapping of the sticks in a constant rhythm. Then we stood at one end of the room and waddled like penguins to the beat of the sticks across the room. Finally, I played this song and we did a combination of finger play and clapping our sticks to the beat while it played:
7- Parachute Penguins: I pulled the parachute out and the kids took turns (3 at a time) sitting in the middle of it (as if it were the ocean) while everyone else made waves around them.
8- Parachute Penguin Balloons: Penguins love toys, so I tossed 3 balloons on the parachute, and we shook them all off a few times. I would have used balls, but we still have balloons left over from my daughter’s birthday!
9- Parachute Den: like the classic “mushroom,” we made a parachute “den” for all our little penguins to play in under the ice!
10- I gave each child a penguin number (between 1-10), then they all went under the parachute. When this song sang their number, they came out and helped shake more waves.
11- Seals and Sharks! Our favorite parachute game is when everyone sits around the parachute and tucks their feet under the parachute. One preschooler (or more, depending on the size of the group) starts out by being a “shark” under the water (parachute) who crawls around and tickles the other children’s toes, turning them into sharks too. Before we played, we talked about how penguins have to watch out for sharks and large seals, so the kids could choose if they wanted to be a shark or seal!
12- Walk Around by Nancy Kopman. We walk around holding onto the parachute and doing the suggested actions in this song:
13- Goodbye Song.
I wanted to save these two songs to do with my own kids later, since we didn’t have time during class:
I’m a little penguin
Black and white.
I waddle to the left
And I waddle to the right.
I cannot fly but I can swim
So I waddle to the water and jump right in!