We started off with a camping hello song while looking at pictures in the book “Down By the River.” Then, we roasted marshmallows over a campfire of red, orange and yellow scarves in a drum, and counted yummy sweet-smelling marshmallows. (More details here).
Here’s how our camping theme continued:
4. Singing Camp Songs around the Campfire – This little book right here is one of my most prized possessions (along with the rest of the Wee Sing series) and it’s where I got my inspiration for the songs we should sing:
I remember being a young girl singing out of this book while my family was on long car rides through the woods. There are SO many wonderful song choices, but these were the ones we sang:
“We’re On the Upward Trail”
“The More We Get Together”
“This Land is Your Land”
“Make New Friends”
“We Won’t Go Home Until Morning”
I also selected a few camp songs that work well to sing in rounds because it’s a fantastic way to work on selective attention. The 4th and 5th graders were up for the challenge! “I Love the Mountains” is a great option, as well as “Zum Gali Gali” and “The Frog Round.”
Goals – To increase expressive language and selective attention.
5. “I Love the Mountains” A Few Ways – There is no song more quintessentially camp-ish than “I Love the Mountains.” It also happens to be the perfect song to target a variety of goals.
Rainbow Handbells – The chord progression for this song is repeated: C/am/dm/G7. Distribute bells to students so you create each chord. I found it helpful to give each chord group a number. The bells that made up the C chord (C and E) were #1; the bells that made up the am chord (A and high C) were #2; the bells that made up the dm chord (D and F) were #3; and the bells that made up the G7 chord (G and B) were #4. (That accounts for all the bells in the rainbow handbell set). While we sang, I held up a card with number 1-4 to cue each group to play at the correct time. Each student played their bell two times when cued.
Rainbow Resonator Bells – Same idea as above. The chord progression is repeated, but this time you can cue individual clients to play: C four times (for the C and am chords); D four times (for the dm and G7 chords), E four times (for the C and am chords), and F four times (for the dm and G7 chords). This will match up perfectly with the chord progression.
Goals – To increase sustained, divided and selective attention.
Songwriting – I brought in a dry erase board and prompted students to fill in the blanks with their favorite camp items and foods:
I love the _____________
I love the _____________
I love the _____________ (etc, etc.)
When all the lights are low. Boom de adda boom de adda boom de adda boom de adda.
The students had so much fun with this songwriting experience! A few of my favorite lines were: I love tacos, I love mosquito bites, I love bears, I love fireflies. Gave me warm fuzzies as we sang :)
Next week, I’ll wrap up our Camping Theme by sharing the activities I used for the resource classroom, which is made up of children who are sensory learners.
Stay tuned next week for that!
Also, I’d love if you could leave a comment below and let me know your favorite camp song to sing!