Counting: 5,4,3,2,1

Counting_ 5,4,3,2,1

Music is a great way to help children develop mathematical concepts.  I even did research for my teaching degree dissertation on this: ‘An investigation into how music can help children’s learning in maths, especially in the concept area of pattern’

How can music help with counting backwards?

Songs and rhymes are brilliant at facilitating counting backwards and there are many to choose from.  Below I have listed those that I use:

  • 5 little ducks
  • 5 little men
  • 10 in the bed
  • 10 sausages
  • 5 l…

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Baa Baa…Sheep...

Baa, Baa... Sheep...

I follow lots of early years groups and one of the questions that come up frequently is, what are the alternate words to…. said nursery rhymes?

One that seems to get lots of responses is baa, baa black sheep.  I have included below some of the ideas that I have come across.  I don’t know who the original creators are so I’m unable to give them credit but I hope that you manage to find something that will inspire you to try something new in your early years setting!

 If you need help with the t…

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5 Musical Tips to Start 2018 On Track

5 Musical Tips to Start 2018 On Track

Do you currently feel that musical activities in your early years setting are non-existent or lack creativity?

What are your current musical activities? 

  • Singing a few songs;
  • Learn songs for an end of term concert
  • Putting a CD on and letting the children listen… 

If you feel this is what you are currently doing, don’t beat yourself up! You can make some simple changes and give the children a wonderful and fully rounded experience in your setting.


1. Have a sort out.

What resource…

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It Is Okay to Make Mistakes!

It is okay to make mistakes

We are only human after all! 

I have made mistakes in front of the children before and I’m sure I will continue to do so.  Whether it be getting the words and tune wrong, strumming the wrong chord on my guitar… I will correct myself or let the children know that I didn’t quite get it right.  Mostly they just accept it and we carry on but sometimes they find it funny or sometimes even look at me with wonder!  All is fine.  I’m sure you know that as an educational professional, children need to k…

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50 Song and Rhymes

50 Songs and Rhymes

What song and rhymes will you sing/say with the children in your early years setting in the next year?

Here are 50 songs and rhymes, in alphabetical order, that I have sung or will be singing in the next year: 

  1. A hedgehog is very prickly
  2. Aeroplanes, aeroplanes
  3. An elephant
  4. Baa, baa black sheep
  5. Bobby Shaftoe
  6. Big Bear
  7. Christmas pudding
  8. Cobbler, cobbler
  9. Coffee, coffee
  10. Cows in the kitchen
  11. Cuckoo
  12. Dr Foster
  13. Dingly dangly scarecrow
  14. Down in the jungle
  15. Five little ducks
  16. Five little men

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Musical Scarves

Musical Scarves

Scarves are one of the essentials in my prop box as they are so versatile. The can be used with babies through to Reception age and beyond.  So how can you use this fantastic resource in your musical activities?  Here are some of the ways I use scarves in my music times.

Songs and Rhymes

I do most of my songs without props but occasionally it is worth adding a prop to either give it a new approach or to engage some of the children who may be reluctant to join in. Here are two ways I may use sc…

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5 Ways to Use Puppets during a Music Time

5 Ways to Use Puppets during a Music Time

Do you currently use puppets during your Music Time?  If not it's time to get them out of the cupboard; they are a great resource!   Here are 5 ideas:

Some of the ideas that I mention require each child to have a puppet; if you don’t have enough for one each then they can share (I talk more about this below), you could use other soft toys or, as an additional activity, you could get the children to create paper puppets. There are also affiliate links included for your convenience.


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Bounce, Move, and Tickle!

Bounce, Move, and Tickle!

Music time with babies can be just as much fun as with the older children in the early years.  Variety is key.  With songs and rhymes, I always try to incorporate some that involve watching, bouncing, movement, tickle, and quiet!  Depending on the age of the babies, in your care, will alter how you approach each idea.  If they don’t have neck control you can still explore the bouncing and movement but support the baby, and their neck, on your shoulder.  Here are 5 different type of song/rhyme ac…

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Eyes on Me 1,2,3!

Eyes on Me 1, 2, 3!

Do you like to use songs and rhymes in your routines?

Would you like some songs to get the children's attention?  I have gathered together some songs that I have heard, found and created to share with you.  Here are 6:

Carpet Song

(tune Frere Jacques)

Are you criss cross? Are you criss cross? Eyes on me? Eyes on me? Hands in your lap Hands in you lap. Quietly Quietly

Everybody do this

Everybody do this, Do this, do this Everybody do this Just like me!

Eyes on me!

Eyes on me 1, 2, 3 (…

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