SONGS FOR SCHOOLS
Do you want to get your school singing?
I have a set of songs that are easy to learn and fun to sing.
Each song has a verse and chorus.
The students get to write the rest of the verses.
Each song has a positive message that we explore during the learning and writing of the song.
The A-E-I-O-U Song
(10-15 minutes learning time)
This is an introductory song to get your school singing immediately and is best delivered in an assembly.
I use call and response to get the students warmed up and then we learn the simple chorus using the vowels A-E-I-O-U.
The two verses consist of the consonants, so everybody knows the words and can concentrate on their singing. Each verse has the same melody, so when the first verse has been learned, the second verse is almost learned too.
A guide to some of the other songs
(60 minutes learning and writing time each)
"Where do you go when the sun goes down?"
Where do you go when the sun goes down?
You take a train ‘til you’re out of town
You go round corners and you make some bends
You turn the key and you’re home again
Where do you go when the sun goes down
What you gonna do?...
This is a song about how we collectively use the same communal spaces of a school but at the end of the day we all go back to different places and lead widely different lives.
The students are asked to consider how they interact positively around school and how much they understand of others’ differences when they are not with them and then we begin to write lyrics for more verses.
"If I ruled the world"
Ruled the world
I’d make some changes
I’d make sure everybody had a place to sleep
A place that’s warm and dry with things they like to keep
This song offers the students the opportunity to think of something they would change immediately if they were given the power to do so around the world. The first line is what they would do and the second is an explanation. They then have to make both lines rhyme.
Some student responses to this song have been heartfelt (everybody should be taught to swim) whilst others have been more selfish (having a 7-day weekend) but both are effective, either providing a good message or just being funny.
The benefits of the project
Throughout the process of learning and writing different songs the students are given the opportunity to:
Pitch notes correctly
Sing musically at different volumes
Learn how to change a spoken phrase into effective lyrics
Learn how songs are structured
Understand the difference between rehearsal and performance
Sing in different parts to each other
Sing in harmony
Express their own ideas
Understand the usefulness of compromise