Call and Response Songs

by | Feb 9, 2019

I find that call and response songs are a great way to teach the children about the music, dance and drumming of countries like those in Africa. It is like the 3 R’s are: rhythm, recitation and repetition.

They love all of the aspects of the call and response style and I find them singing it long after we have completed the activity.

Through call and response, you can increase children’s vocabulary by linking together the small words they know, making bigger ones. This connecting of familiar linguistic patterns to make new ones is a great tool in vocabulary growth.

Some examples are words such as “POPULATION”, “MEDITERRANEAN”, “INFORMATION”.

For example, let’s start with the first word, POPULATION. All kids know the words “pop”, “you”, “lay” and maybe “shun”. The call and response could be done this way:

Call – Pop

Response – Pop

Call – You

Response – You

Call – Pop You

Response – Pop You

Call – Lay

Response – Lay

Call – Shun

Response – Shun

Call – Lay Shun

Response – Lay Shun

Call – Population

Response – Population

Lots of words can be broken down this way for fun learning for the children.

A West African call and response song I did on my video with the daycare kids can be found on this video:

It is called Toom-bah-ee-lero and features the Djembe drum with children doing their own creative dance and others playing drums.

Until next time,
Let the music move you!

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