These five poem-to-song activities are a joyful way to practice reading fluency and/or build music skills. The elements of music which are embedded in poetry (beat, meter, rhythm, inflection, phrasing, and form) help us to easily transform spoken language into music. As students engage in these activities, they naturally develop their E.A.R.S. (expression, accuracy, rate & smoothness – the elements of reading and music fluency). These pieces work equally well as classroom activities or performance pieces.
Each poem/song has five sheets/formats which can be projected or printed (and enlarged if desired): (1) plain poetry text, (2) poetry text with accents (syllables with strongest stress ) in bold letters, (3) color-coded text with bell images, (4) color-coded text without bell images, and (5) music notation of the song (for teacher reference or older students). Although music sheets are included, music reading is not required for teachers (or students) to have success with these materials. If the poetry is practiced well with its steady pulse, accents and metrical feel, adding bells or chimes and singing will be a natural progression. The color-coding in this set matches KidsPlay hand bells and resonator bells (red C, orange D, yellow E, green F, turquoise G, royal blue A, magenta B). Each piece requires between five and eight bells and can be performed using an 8-note, diatonic (basic, no sharps or flats) set of bells. You can use the color-coded labels on page 29 to 'retrofit' plain pipe chimes or resonator bells.
Wishing you a joyful holiday season!
Key Concepts: beat, rhythm, poetry, fluency, melody, bells, chimes