Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Seventy Six Trombones Led The Big Parade

I love a good parade!  And this Memorial Day weekend there were tons!  There is so much movement involved in a parade even if you don't see a single dance step. 

Here is what I saw:
  • People walking in unison
  • People keeping a specific formation
  • A group following a leader
  • A group focusing on their spatial relationships
Here are other things I saw:
  • Flags, banners, hats, instruments 
  • Waving, smiling, marching, skipping, hand holding, hugging, clapping
  • Pictures being taken, posing, freezing ( in a shape for a picture)
 Create Your Own Parade!
  1. Make banners, hats or flags:  Decide what your parade is celebrating.  Maybe it is the end of the year party, the arrival of warm weather, a big dance achievement like everyone remembering to go to the bathroom before class.  It does not matter.  However, have the kids decide.  They will have a much bigger sense of ownership surrounding the parade.  Once, you have decided then create your banners, hats or flags.  These are great props!
  2. Create instruments: Fill Tupperware with rice or pasta and shake to your hearts content. Empty tissue boxes with rubber bands around them make great string instruments, and let's not forget the old standby - pots, pans and cooking spoons!
  3. Decide on your Pathway:  Are you going to walk in straight lines, curves or in angles?  Will you turn around at some point? 
  4. Decide on how you will move through the space: Will you walk, skip, jump, turn, gallop or spin in your parade?  Will you follow a leader, move in unison as a group or move as a group doing your own thing?
  5. Take a picture:  Come up with a few poses or shapes before the parade starts.  Then when you say "picture please" have the kids get into their shapes!  Either take real pictures or pretend to with a big gesture.
  6. Have a real parade!  Once all the different variables are worked out, have real parade.  Invite parents to line up against the walls, or see if your class can parade through the halls of the school.  Parents, see if you can create a parade in your neighborhood or invite some neighbors to stand outside their houses and wave!
There is always something to celebrate.  And every celebration is better with a few trombones or better yet a few pots and pans!

Have fun parading about with the children in your life!