Every month the song/dance/activity will change. Many of the songs will be from my Recordings. Please print the page and do the activity with your child. Teachers may print the page to use with their classes. If you have questions, Contact Me.
Tis the season for many families and schools. I know not all who come to me for music ideas celebrate Christmas, but as I AM a "Christmas Carole" – that's how I got my name – I'm taking this month to share some of my favorite Santa song, chant and fingerplay. If you came looking for Winter songs, please go to the bottom of the page and click on the "more Songs of the Month" – you'll find plenty to choose from in the Archive!
I'm always looking for thematic songs and activities that have educational value, or build on skills that I'm working on with the children I teach. I think the 3 selections this month do just that!
I'll start with a rhythmic chant, "When Santa Comes to My House!" We have tempo work: fast/slow. We put the beat into our body with hands, feet and movement. And it's a great activity for children to learn spatial awareness – how they move in relation to other people and objects.
Then I've re-worked my favorite circle dance, B-I-N-G-O! (SOTM 2/09) into S-A-N-T-A! Children from 2 to 6 really enjoy moving together in a circle, and the extra giggles come as we move toward the center and out again at the end!
Finally, a fingerplay: "Here is the Chimney". I learned the first stanza from the teachers at St David's Nursery School in Glenview, IL. I added the second stanza because I wanted MORE – and the kids do, too!
"When Santa Comes To My House"
1. When Santa comes to my house, I would like to peek
"When Santa Comes To My House" author unknown – anyone know?
Start this rhyme sitting down, patting knees on the beat (bold words are the beat, underlined words are vocal emphasis) in Line 1, slow and steady. Line 2 is a fast staccato for every syllable! Repeat. Now do it with a clap on the beat. Ready to stand and stamp it? YES! Once you're secure in the slow/fast tempo changes, try moving around the room in a circle – slow walk for Line 1, quick feet stamping for Line 2. Everyone must come to a full stop on the final "asleep!" We've used this as a "travelling" song, too! It gets a class down the long hallway in a fun, yet organized way!"
A jolly man is coming soon
Make a hold-hands circle and walk to the right while singing the first 4 lines. Then, while speaking the letters S-A-N-T- one additional time, everyone takes one step for each letter toward the middle of the circle. Then, on the "Aaaaa" all back out to original circle – ending standing and ready to repeat the song.
NOTE: If children fall down on purpose as they back out, I take a moment to teach them that all circle dances DO NOT end in falling down – and we practice doing it again WITHOUT falling down. Positive reinforcement works best – praise those who DON'T fall down, and "let's do it again and see if we can ALL stay standing!"
"Here is the Chimney"
Here is the chimney(fist in front of body, thumb tucked in, thumb-side up)
Down through the chimney(thumb moves from pointing up to pointing down, moving down)
Age Range: I do all these activities with my 2 - 5 year olds. Even my 1's enjoy the fingerplay, especially when an adult does it with them!
Purpose: As much fun as all these activities are, they also connect mind with body, promote physical coordination, cooperation and rhythmic movement. There's lots of great vocabulary and rhyming, too! Enjoy!