Copy Cat

Welcome to Episode 13 of the Doremi Teach podcast. Today I’m going to teach you a song that’s perfect for preparing pulse and rhythm.

Copy Cat

Copy cat, copy cat

Sitting on the door mat

Hello there and welcome to the Doremi Teach podcast. If you’re interested in teaching musical skills and literacy through singing then this is the place for you. My name is Helen Russell from Doremi Connect and I’m going to help you achieve your goals using the Kodály approach.

Benefits of Copy Cat

  • This song is used to prepare pulse or rhythm, and taking turns
  • The toneset is mi-so-la with a range of a Perfect 4th so ideal for little voices and for nervous teachers
  • It uses the so-mi-la-so-mi motif, which is easy for beginner singers to pitch accurately because it is used naturally in playgrounds all over the world, ner-ner-na-ner-ner
  • The rhythm is very simple, just using ta and titi or crotchets and quavers so this will reappear throughout the curriculum as we prepare and present rhythm
  • The game involves solo singing and improvising actions
  • It’s great to get your students moving around and the actions can be as energetic as you want
  • I also include this in my piano curriculum

The Game

The game for this varies as the curriculum progresses

Level 1: A simple copy cat game

The teacher sings the song while doing a pulse action, and the students copy.

It’s not so simple though, because the students must only sing and do the action when it’s their turn. When the teacher is singing the students must stand still and silent.

This is actually way harder than you’d think, and is a great way to practise patience and turn taking.

An extension to this is to get the students to choose the pulse action. They can either lead the game by singing the solo, or “gift” their idea to the teacher or a friend.

Remember to make your pulse actions large so the students don’t accidentally slip onto the rhythm.

Level 2: Simon Says

Once you have completed Doremi Teach: Music module RedB and have presented the concept of steady beat you can expand on the game.

The students ONLY copy if your actions show the steady beat. If they show something else (use the rhythm of the song but don’t tell them that!) then they must stand still and no sing.

Level 3: Rhythm Actions

Once you’ve presented the concept of rhythm, you can change the rules so they ONLY copy if your actions show the rhythm.

Make sure you let us know what you think of the episode and do share it with your colleagues if you’ve found it helpful

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I hope you have a lovely week, filled with music and singing.

You’ve been listening to the Doremi Teach podcast with Helen Russell from Doremi Connect. Helping you achieve your music teaching goals with the Kodály approach.


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