Little Leaves Are Falling

I LOVE this little song.  I have always loved how isolated do is at the end and have used it as kinesthetic preparation for that melodic concept.  However, last year I took inspiration from Tanya LeJeune to add some new movement to it.  This new movement really helped my second graders be able to sing it as a round.  Granted, we didn't do it as a four-part round, but they did get up to three parts (first year in a new school, I thought that was pretty good!)

Here's the song:


These are the leaves I use:


I found them at King Soopers (our local Kroger store) a couple years ago.  They are so realistic looking but surprisingly durable for the $1.00 that I paid for them!  They are fabric and we use them in kindergarten and first grade for Down Down, Yellow and Brown  so they've been prepped in "leaf etiquette". :)

Formation: standing circle, leaves on the ground in the middle of the circle and every student holding a leaf or two in each hand with arms raised and hands above their heads. 

Action:
  1. "Little leaves are falling": with one hand, in a conducting like pattern, have the leaf (or leaves) in that hand float to your side, still holding onto the leaf.
  2. "Falling everywhere":  with the other hand, do the same movement as the first phrase.
  3. "Making all the tall trees": slowly raise arms up high above head, still holding onto the leaves.
  4. "Look so very bare":  students either float their leaves to the ground, still holding onto them, or they can let them freely drop with their "branches" (a.k.a. their arms) still above their heads.  
    1. The first way is a great physical prep for do: they actually touch the ground on the last and lowest note of the song.
    2. The latter is a lot of fun visually as it looks like leaves falling from the tree, but if not prepped right can be a classroom management nightmare with students diving for leaves. 
  5. Once your students have mastered this, try it as a round! :)
Another thing we do with this song is use the leaves on my felt staff board.  They are able to write out the so so so la so mi & so so so la so patterns on the staff, using the leaves for note heads.  Visually, we are also able to talk about the mystery note: that it is lower them mi.  Using the leaves, we show that one of the critical attributes of the mystery note is that it is a skip lower then mi.

Happy leaf singing!

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