When thinking about using music in lessons I am very particular about the artist and song I use. I strongly feel this is especially important when working with junior primary schools (reception to grade 2). For example, at a school I worked at in a junior primary class the combined school performed for parents a couple of times a term. At one such performance a grade R/1 composite class performed a Katy Perry song. I felt this was inappropriate given the content of many of her songs which are targeted at a much older audience than ages 5 and 6 years old. The teacher in question justified it by saying the “kids listen to her all the time” and “they love her”. I doubt though that every student and every parent however would agree. Despite voicing my opinion it went ahead and leadership said nothing. As a parent I would be horrified if I had a 5 year old who was singing one of her songs. It doesn’t matter what students are listening to at home – that is up to their parents to decide – but I feel in the classroom we should be striving to use songs that are appropriate and relevant.
This therefore is the first in a series of post about different songs that can be used to complement work being carried out in the classroom. All posts will have the label “song selection” to locate quickly.
Song: Tadpole Blues
Artist: Peter Combe
Theme: change, life cycles, confusion
What’s it about?
Tadpole Blues is a song about a tadpole who loves being a tadpole until he becomes unhappy as his body starts changing. The song describes the changes – such as growing legs, his tail shrinking, etc. – until he is finally a frog.
Peter Combe uses expression and emphasis to make the little tadpole narrating this tale sound very sad and confused. It explains metamorphosis in a simplistic way that even young children can understand. The tune is catchy and the chorus allows children to sing along.
The only thing I can think of is that at the end of the song the tadpole (now frog) has “more or less got use to it [being a frog]” and he does sound sad still. Very sensitive children may think that changing is scary or negative – though I listened to the song as a kids and never had that issue!
I really like how appealing the song is. It is simple. It is catchy. It is entertaining. It teaches (ever so simplistically) about frogs.
Kari Bolt has a free set of a frog’s life-cycle available on TPT.
The Notebooking Nook has a free set of printable all about frogs available on TPT.
Musical Notes Clipart (c) Webweaver’s