If you go down to the woods...

…this March, you’re sure of a big surprise with a series of sessions on teddy bears at Bangers & Smash!

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We’ve started each session with the rhyme, Round & Round The Garden Like A Teddy Bear, which we’ve acted out with a teddy bear finger puppet.

Babies, toddlers and preschoolers have enjoyed interacting with the finger puppet and some older children have felt confident enough to come to the front to recite the rhyme on their own. It has been particularly effective as a way to explore the children’s ‘quiet voices’ and to engage in an activity which requires a high level of concentration and good listening skills.

Moving on, Cathy has introduced a bigger teddy bear and sung the song, I Know A Teddy Bear. Again, children have taken it in turns to come to the front to act out the song, rolling the teddy over and over on the line, Roly poly into town, knocking all the people down, and rocking him from side to side on the line, Pink pyjamas, furry feet, see him dancing down the street!

Following this, we’ve listened and sung along to Raffi’s version of the classic children’s song, Ha Ha Thisaway, which tells the story of a little boy who goes walking with his teddy bear and chooses a star ‘to go to’. Children have been quick to memorise the song and actions and have enjoyed repeating these every week.

Cathy has then introduced Teddy Bears’ Picnic, using the bigger teddy to mime walking out of the nursery to the park, climbing over the fence and walking through the woods to a clearing filled with picnicking teddies.

We’ve then acted out the song, sitting on a rug and using paper plates and spoons to:

  • mime eating picnic food (which the children have enjoyed choosing)

  • play a simple pulse

Finally, Cathy has played a recording of another Raffi classic, Teddy Bear Hug, and the children have either sung along with their own teddy bear (if nurseries have had enough for one per child) or passed Cathy’s around the circle, taking it in turns to give him a cuddle.

British Woodland

Meanwhile, at Under the Willow, we’ve continued our 12-week project, British Woodland, with three more sessions:

  • tree dwellers

  • nocturnal animals

  • foraging in the woodland

As well as repeating songs and activities from previous sessions, Cathy has introduced a variety of new musical activities, including:

  • taking turns to come to the front and play a clay bird whistle

  • curling up like baby birds in a nest while listening to Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony

  • closing our eyes and identifying the sounds of nocturnal animals (a bird whistle, an owl call and a screech owl)

  • pointing at pictures of trees and animals while singing Land Of The Silver Birch

  • taking turns to choose a picture of a different kind of foraged food (blackberries, hazelnuts, wild garlic, mushrooms) while singing A-Foraging We Will Go

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We’ve also begun rehearsals for our British Woodland Project Celebration, during which children and staff will perform songs and activities based on Britta Teckentrup’s picture book, Tree.

Music in the Wildlife Garden

Last but not least, Bangers & Smash has once again been invited to run a singing and junk instrument-making session at the Mother Goose Nursery Wildlife Garden from 12-4pm on Saturday 29 June 2019.

We’ll be introducing more of Cathy’s original songs and are delighted to welcome pianist, double bass player and all-round jazz legend, Steve Rose, who will be providing some first-class accompaniment.

Music in the Wildlife Garden is a FREE family event so please bring your little ones along and join in the fun!