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Fun Tambourine Activities for Preschoolers



Fun Tambourine Activities for Preschoolers

Music teacher resources such as Shake, Rattle, and Roll by Abigail Flesch Connors are a wonderful place to find music and movement activities for preschoolers! Music activities for preschoolers are not only a fun way to learn about music, but they also contribute to language, math, and science growth as well.  

Here are a few music and movement activities using tambourines that will have your preschoolers moving and learning in no time:

 

Jumping on the Floor

Learning Benefits:

  • Curiosity
  • Directionality (playing the tambourine upside down)
  • Fine-motor skills
  • Improvisation and creative thinking
  • Movement vocabulary (jumping, sliding, rolling, and so on)
  • Social skills (sharing ideas and respecting those of others)

Hold the tambourine, head facing up, in both hands (with fingers in the holes rather than under the tambourine). Gently make it jump on the floor.

Sing to the tune of “If You're Happy and You Know It”:

Oh, my tambourine is jumping on the floor,

Oh, my tambourine is jumping on the floor,

Oh, it’s jumping on the floor, like it never did before,

Oh, my tambourine is jumping on the floor!

Additional verses:

Oh, my tambourine is rolling on the floor…(roll the tambourine vertically back and forth on the floor)

Oh, my tambourine is sliding on the floor…(hold the tambourine at an angle to the floor, and slide it along the floor like a vacuum cleaner)

Oh, my tambourine is jumping upside down…(hold the tambourine with both hands, head facing down, and gently make it jump on the floor)

Oh, my tambourine is spinning on the floor…(hold the tambourine vertically on the floor, and use both hands to turn it and make it spin)  

Ask the children for other ways to play the tambourine.
Variation: Use the pattern of the song “If You’re Happy and You Know it.” Sing without playing until the end of the first, second, and fourth lines, when you do the motion twice. For instance, “Oh, my tambourine is jumping on the floor (jump, jump)”

 

We’re Driving ‘Round the Village

Learning Benefits:

  • Curiosity
  • Fine-motor skills
  • Imagination (pretending to drive the tambourine like a steering wheel)
  • Improvisation and creative thinking
  • Patterns (the first three lines of each verse have the same words; the fourth line is different- an AAAB pattern)
  • Social skills (sharing ideas and respecting those of others)
  • Vocabulary (village, scratching)

Hold the tambourine like a steering wheel, and “drive” while singing to the tune of “Go ‘Round and ‘Round the Village”:

We’re driving ‘round the village,

We’re driving ‘round the village,

We’re driving ‘round the village,

As we have done before!

Additional verses:

We’re tapping ‘round the village…(tap the tambourine)

We’re shaking ‘round the village…(shake the tambourine)

We’re scratching ‘round the village…(scratch the tambourine with fingernails)

Have the children contribute more ways to go “’round the village” with the tambourines.

 

Tambourines Are Falling Down

Learning Benefits:

  • Curiosity
  • Directionality (falling-down motion)
  • Fine-motor skills
  • Improvisation and creative thinking
  • Rhythmic awareness (most verses have a three-beat rhythm at the end of the first three lines)
  • Social skills (sharing ideas and respecting those of others)

Hold the tambourine with both hands, and make it “fall” from up high like rain, over and over, to the beat. Sing to the tune of “London Bridge Is Falling Down”:

Tambourines are falling down,

Falling down, falling down

Tambourines are falling down,

My fair lady.

Additional verses:

Tambourines go tap, tap, tap…(tap the tambourine, emphasizing the beats on the “tap, tap, tap”)

Tambourines go shake, shake, shake…(shake the tambourine)

Tambourines go pat, pat, pat…(pat the tambourine on the hip)

Older students can be encouraged to come up with more ways to play the tambourine.

 

Tapping My Tambourine

Learning Benefits:

  • Curiosity
  • Fine-motor skills (using pointer finger to tap)
  • Imagination (pretending the tambourine is a hat)
  • Improvisation and creative thinking
  • Keeping a steady beat
  • Kinesthetic awareness (feeling the tambourine patting on the knee or hip)
  • Social skills (sharing ideas and respecting those of others)

Tap the tambourine to the beat with your pointer finger while singing to the tune of “Shoo, Fly, Don’t Bother Me”:

Tapping my tambourine,

Tapping my tambourine,

Tapping my tambourine,

Tap, tap, tap my tambourine.

Additional verses:

Shaking my tambourine…

Patting my tambourine…(pat the tambourine on knee or hip)

Wearing my tambourine…(hold the tambourine on your head like a hat and bounce to the beat)

Ask the children to suggest other ways to play the tambourine.

 

Find more great rhythm instrument activities in Shake, Rattle, and Roll!




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