Mayfield Junior School: Singing with Jaime

Published : Thursday, February 16, 2017 | 4:10 PM

“We all say things and do things with our students that we might never do in front of a group of adults. For instance, yesterday, I had a spontaneous dance party with the kids because they needed a brain break. Let’s just say there was a lot of ‘shootin’ the moon’. It’s the only dance move I have down.”

Jaime, Mayfield Junior School’s amazing first grade teacher, wanted to bring one of her passions, singing, into her classroom. So, she decided to turn every lesson possible into memory songs. From classroom management and organization, to grammar and math skills, Jaime and her kids sing what they are learning all day long. Here is an exclusive interview with Jaime about how she comes up with her silly songs. She also shared some videos of these songs in action! #getyourcuteon

Why do you sing with your students?

” I love singing and it makes things easier to remember. I really want to get things stuck in their heads.”

How do you use the songs you teach?

“I start each year in song with classroom rules, and then I use them throughout the year for grammar rules and things that are important to remember about reading. Memorizing might not be as meaningful without a tune!

While they are working, I might sing the song about the rule they are practicing and then they sing along with me. This reminds them of the rule as they work through the activity. I even use songs for classroom rules to remind them about things like putting your name and date on the page.”

How do you come up with your songs?

“I use tunes that I already know and enjoy and then I steal them and change the words. Sometimes, the class comes up with tunes together. First, we decide if the song would work and then I come up with the words for the tune. Giving kids a chance to pick the song means more buy in from the beginning. For instance, the kids really wanted to make up a song to the tune of Star Wars, which worked perfectly with the rule for adjectives. ”

Adjectives: (Star Wars Theme)
An adjective
is a describing word
is a describing word
is a describing word
for a noun

Two Vowels Together (Happy Birthday Song)
“When two vowels are together
you will only hear the first one
the first vowel will be long
and the second one will be silent“

Make It Plural: (One of Jaime’s favorite country songs)
“Make it plural
add an S
sometimes add an es
everybody knows
an S makes more than one of those”

If you want to sing with your students, talk to Jaime! She has a ton of strategies. My favorite part is you can really turn any song with a clear melody and chorus into a memory song. If you feel like jammin’ to tunes from the 80’s with your kids, go for it!

Mayfield Junior School, 405 South Euclid Avenue, Pasadena, (626) 796-2774 or visit www.mayfieldjs.org.

 

 

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