We’re getting soooo close to the start of Winter Tiny Tots. Are you as excited as we are?! We thought it would be fun to share some of the winter repertoire along with some suggestions for engaging kiddos with the music. Here’s a sneak peek of 5 pieces you’ll hear at Tiny Tots in February and March – plus some fun activities to go along with them.
1. Olympic Fanfare by John Williams
The theme of winter Tiny Tots is teamwork. There are small “teams” within the orchestra – such as each family of instruments – and the whole orchestra together makes one big team. What better piece for that theme than the Olympic Fanfare?
Activity: Let little ones march around to the Olympic Fanfare just like the Olympians will be marching into the opening ceremony on February 9th. If you feel like getting even more creative, here’s a fun and easy Olympic torch craft they can create to march around.
2. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and the ABC Song
At Tiny Tots, kids will be asked to sing along as the orchestra plays Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and the ABC Song. Did you know that they both use exactly the same music?!
Activity: Here’s a fun way to flex your musical brain with a child’s toy that so many of us have at home or at preschool: a Fisher Price Xylophone. Even if you can’t read music, follow along with the colors below by playing the matching colored bar on your xylophone. You can now play two songs, Twinkle Twinkle and the ABC’s!
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
3. Bugler’s Holiday by Leroy Anderson
Bugler’s Holiday features a trio of trumpets. Listen to this piece to hear the bright, brassy sound of many trumpets playing together at once.
Activity: Ask kids if they know what instrument was featured throughout the piece. Discuss what a trumpet looks like and have them pretend to play it. The trumpet is an instrument that is featured in many different types of music. Play some of these other fun examples of music featuring the trumpet: La Vie en Rose featuring Louis Armstrong and the Trumpet Concerto by Alexander Arutunian.
4. Quintette en Ut by Claude Arrieu
Here’s an example of a small “team” of musicians. This woodwind quintet features four members of the woodwind family – the flute, oboe, clarinet, and bassoon. It also highlights one member of the brass family, the French horn.
Activity: Ask kids what different groups of instruments, or ensembles, they’re familiar with or name some ensembles for them and ask if they know what instruments are included. Some examples might be an orchestra, a rock band, a marching band, etc.
5. Cowboys Overture by John Williams
Some pieces of music were composed with a specific theme or idea in mind, and John Williams was clearly inspired by the Wild West in “The Cowboys Overture” (which was written for the John Wayne movie of the same name).
Activity: Have kids play a guessing game! Play the piece for them without telling them the name and have them tell you what they think the piece sounds like or what it reminds them of. Have them act out what they’re imagining or dance along. It’s up to you if you let them in on the real title and theme in the end!