Hi, I'm Shelley

Welcome to Rocking the Playroom!

Here you'll find songs for babies, toddlers and preschoolers that you can sing whenever you feel like it.

There are also more structured Playschool Activities that parents or teachers could do as a playtime activity.

And finally, there are the Playschool Lessons, which group a few Playschool Activities together and follow the themes that the kids are doing at my local playschool.

Learn more about RTP

Lesson: Colour My World

Lesson: Colour My World

Every week, I share a music lesson I've done with the kids at playschool. Parents can do these lessons at home as a fun musical activity, and preschool/playschool teachers can use them for their music rings.

Today's lesson fits with the theme: Colour My World. The aim is for the kids to know their three primary colours (red, yellow, blue), then black and white, and then we'll aim for the secondary colours - green, purple, orange and brown.

Welcome Song

Sing the Rocking the Playroom Welcome Song.

Dancing and Singing: The Fruit Salad Ballad

Sing The Fruit Salad Ballad.

Instead of using the colours of the children's outfits, we'll give each child a different colour ball and they'll need to "slide into the fruit bowl" in the middle of the circle when their colour gets called.

Rhythm Instrument: Rhythm Sticks

Repeat Oh My Darling Valentine from last week. The children have had the opportunity to play with the rhythm sticks in free play this week, so they should be more proficient at playing the rhythm sticks, and they will be a bit less of a novelty!


Big Family of God

We'll sing Big Family of God with the guitar, and give the actions a try as well!

Red Light, Red Light

When you look at the traffic light (robot in South Africa!), which colours do you see? Red, yellow and green. Let's learn a rhyme about what each colour means.

Red light, red light, what do you say?
I say STOP and stop right away.
Yellow light, yellow light, what do you mean?
I say WAIT 'til the light turns green.
Green light, green light, what do you say?
I say GO, but look both ways.

Rain, rain, go away

We really grateful for the rain this week, but it is a bit disappointing that we can't play outside for days on end! :)

Rain, rain, go away,
come again another day.
Little Ava wants to play,
Rain, rain, go away

Children can sing the song again, replacing "Ava" with their own names.

Parallel Activities

We've decided to have a parallel activity for the younger children in the class, if they have lost focus in the more structured lesson. The parallel activity should ideally be done with a teaching assistant in a separate room, but if there isn't a separate space available, then the kids can just be taken aside and given the activity.

  • Put different colour balls (ball pond balls are ideal) into boxes or bowls marked with that particular colour.
  • Wave scarves of different colors from side to side in a swaying motion.
  • Play "whispering rhythm sticks" - any rhythm sticks alternative that won't be as loud as traditional rhythm sticks/claves and cause a distraction to the main lesson e.g. two ice lolly sticks or tongue depressors, two straws, or two spoons. The idea is for the kiddies to get the idea of hitting two similar objects together in a controlled way and for a tapping or clicking sound to result.

The younger kiddies could join up with the rest of the class for the singing section, but if they're not ready, then they continue with the parallel activities.

How did it go?

The parallel activities worked very well. The little ones had fun learning about colours and playing rhythm sticks and other instruments while the older ones had an easier time keeping focussed in the more structured lesson.

I made a real rookie error in the Fruit Salad Ballad by giving the kids the balls before I taught them the song! So I then had to make sure that they didn't turn the lesson into a game of juggling! So we'll do the song again next week and I think I'll do stickers rather than balls. We'll also draw or tape off a "fruit bowl" in the middle of the ring, and then draw or tape off an outer ring, on which the children should stand when they're not in the fruit bowl. I think at this early stage of the year, the kids didn't quite understand the concept of standing in the middle of the ring and so when the first colour was called, everyone mobbed into the middle, causing a bit of chaos! Nevertheless, the kids enjoyed the song, and I'm confident that our second attempt at it will produce a fruit salad that isn't quite as mushy!

They played the rhythm sticks beautifully - better than last week - proving that practice makes perfect and that repetition is essential.

We did only the first verse and chorus of "Big Family of God". We'll keep introducing the song gradually. They enjoyed "Rain Rain, go away", especially when I sang each of their names in the song. And while they listened to "Red light, red light", it was maybe a bit much for them to remember as a rhyme - maybe we need to set it to music to help remember it...?

Looking for more fun musical activities to do with your kids?

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Lesson: Baby Animals

Lesson: Baby Animals

Learning Colours with the Fruit Salad Ballad

Learning Colours with the Fruit Salad Ballad