One of my students asked me the other day which of the songs from Doremi Piano is my favourite. I didn’t have to think very long. My favourite song is the one that can come out time and time again. It’s so popular in my Kodály inspired classroom that my students never get bored of playing it. It also covers a number of learning objectives so it’s versatile too. You can find it in the first Doremi book, Sing and Play
The song is Here Sits A Mousie, a simple mi-so-la song.
The lyrics are: Here sits a mousie, in his little housie. No-one comes to see him. Poor little mousie.
The melody: so so-la so mi / so-so so-la so mi / so-so so-la so mi / so so-la so mi
My idea for this game came from a sadness about this poor little mousie. I must have been having an emotional day! Poor little mousie indeed. No-one comes to see him? That’s just too sad. I can’t leave it at that! So I devised an extension to the song where lots of his friends do come to see him.
I have a soft mouse toy to play the part of the mousie. I select two or more other toys as the mouse’s friends and give them each a rhythm flash card from the Doremi Piano Game Cards Pack. I use at least the two rhythms from the song.
I bounce each toy to the rhythm on their card and ask the student to do the same until they are confident they know the rhythms.
Then we sing Here Sits A Mousie and the mouse bounces in time with the pulse. At the end of the song I knock or clap one of the rhythms. This is the toy knocking on Mousie’s door. The student then chooses the correct visitor.
You could leave the rhythm flash cards visible, or put them away. An alternative start to this game is to demonstrate each rhythm without the cards and the student must select the correct card.
As always, next we swap roles. The student sings the song and knocks the rhythm and I have to select the correct friend. You can expand this game by using more and more friends. You can use known rhythms or use those from a new song you want to prepare. You could even create a doorbell melody to cover pitch as well as rhythm.
The students will play this all lesson if you let them!
Try adding some Kodály-inspired activities into your lessons!