Such a small thing, but so powerful when used to a steady beat!
Ask the children, “Can your hand follow my hand?”
Demonstrate the following pattern – Long, Long, Long, Long, Long, Long, short, short Long (quarter, quarter, eighth, eighth, quarter) over and over again. (Note: you won’t start shaking the egg for this pattern until the second word/downbeat.) The two short shakes come on the words “rain,” “-gain,””rain,” and “-gain.”
Before handing out the eggs, have the children practice the pattern a couple times. Ask them to do the pattern with their pretend egg as you sing. Sing the song and do the pattern with the children. To add interest you can say, “Freeze” at the end of the phrase and then ask the children to turn a different way. (Turn to this wall! You continue singing the next phrase, then say freeze again. Have the children turn a different way.)
Have other adults help you pass out the eggs to the children. (One of the posts on this blog told me of putting 7 eggs into 6 bags, then she just passes the bags to the teachers. The teachers then pass out the eggs and collect them. Such a smart idea!)
Sing the song again, doing the pattern with the children as you sing. Using freezes while they are shaking the eggs is a great idea (it also helps with control of the classroom).
Tell the children you noticed that every time we sing the word “rain,” we shake our eggs three times (short, short, long). Demonstrate by singing and shaking. Also tell them that “guess what? we also shake three times on again!” Demonstrate.
Sing the song again doing the pattern, asking the children to make sure to shake three times every time they sing rain and again.
It is a great challenge for the younger children, and it is fun for them!
Say to the children, “Here’s the pattern.” Demonstrate the following pattern at least four times to the beat.
Shake, shake, change hands, hit the egg to your thigh (patsch).
Ask the children to describe this pattern with their words. Demonstrate the pattern again as the children describe what you are doing. Challenge the children to do the pattern with you using an imaginary egg.
Do the pattern a couple of times, then begin singing the song and doing the pattern. (Note: you will pause on the word “can” with your egg on your thigh for the fermata.) Sing the song all the way through as you do the pattern.
When you finish singing, pass the eggs out to the children. Immediately start the pattern and sing the song as you do the pattern.
Call out “Freeze!” Ask the children to hold their eggs up in the air. Tell the children that by the count of 10, they need to exchange eggs with someone else so that they have another color of egg.
Sing the song and do the pattern again with their new color of egg.
Ask the children to quickly hand their eggs in to their teachers as you conclude the activity.
Brain research tells us that the attitude we feel and experience while we are learning something stays with us much longer than what we learn! This activity is challenging for the children, and it is fun! They are engaged, learning the words through the back door, and they are practicing their ability to keep a steady beat… all at the same time!