Submitted by Patty O., Arkansas
Idea posted April 13, 2004
This kindergarten bunny activity was so much fun, I thought I'd share.
All children found a sleeping spot on the floor. They were bunnies and were asleep in their holes in the valley. There was no talking allowed. They were to react only to the music I improvised on the piano. Each time I did it, it was different, but the main ideas stayed the same.
I played light, flowing patterns for the sleeping bunnies. Then I said, "And sometimes in their sleep, the bunnies twitched because they were dreaming of adventures yet to come." I played short mordent-like notes on the piano. (It was so funny to see them with their eyes closed, twitching their hands and feet.) The bunnies rolled over and slowly yawned. The bunnies stretched and sat up. (I played appropriate music for them - slow and dreamy.)
The bunnies popped their heads out of their hole and looked around. It was safe, so they crept out of their bunny home. Looking around, they saw some friends. They waved. And then they hopped, hopped, hopped. Hopped, hopped, hopped. They waved again at their friends. And they hopped, hopped, hopped. Hopped, hopped, hopped. (All of this I accompanied on the piano, and they were very good at listening and matching up their hops with my hopping notes on the piano.)
But something was wrong, (low tremolo on the piano) - what could it be? (low tremolo) Hungerrrrr. So, the bunnies looked around for some carrots. And they sniffed, sniffed, sniffed. Sniffed, sniffed, sniffed. (Again, the piano led all movements - I talked as little as possible.) A carrot (chord)! So they pulled - and they pulled - and they pulled - and PLOP - a carrot. They nibbled, nibbled, nibbled, nibbled. AHHHH!!!! Nibbled, nibbled, nibbled. Yum (low tremolo), but still they were hungry. So, they sniffed, sniffed, sniffed. Sniffed, sniffed, sniffed. Another carrot (chord)! So they pulled - and they pulled - and they pulled - and PLOP - a carrot. They nibbled, nibbled, nibbled, nibbled.
Drip, drop. (On the piano - high falling notes, imitating raindrops.) Drip, drop (more rapid notes). Oh, NO! A storm! The bunnies ducked and found cover. (Storm increased and I included thunder in the bass - big storm on the piano - the students were cowering with their hands over their heads.) Slowly, the storm passed, the thunder was less often, the rain lessened. The bunnies looked up at the sky and the sun came out (arpeggios).
Slowly, they came out and hopped, hopped, hopped. Hopped, hopped, hopped. But, now they were hopping slower and slower. (Same movement on the piano - slower and slower.) They slowly waved good bye to their friends and crept home. In their homes again, they laid down and yawned and stretched. They slowly closed their eyes and gently fell asleep. Some of them were dreaming and their little bodies would twitch, twitch, twitch. Twitch, twitch, twitch. (The music slowed and became calmer and gentler.) The little bunnies were asleep after a fun day in the valley. The end!
They loved it. And it was fun for me, too - making the sounds on the piano and letting myself adjust the story according to each group.