Singing to New Heights: New Note La

Hello, Music Makers! 

If you've been keeping up, you know that our last post talked about sol and mi. The interval of sol and mi is the first that a child learns to sing tunefully. And where sol and mi are, our new note la is not far behind. 

Music for Kids: Introducing La

Remember our playground example of "na-na na-na boo-boo, you ca- an't catch me"? Children sing some variation of this chant all the time. The second na-na as well as the second part of the word "caant" uses our new note la.

So, on to singing to new heights with our new note la. Here is how to sing it, how to introduce it to your child, and how to practice using it in your musical moments. 

Let's Sing La:

Play this recording, and then sing the song to your child.

The sheet music is available in the folk song index


The Game:

This is a children's song from the West Indies. In the original game, children walk around in the circle singing the song. Once child is in the center and at the part that says "down, Miss Mary" he or she taps another child on the shoulder who crouches down, still walking. The song continues until every player is crouching.

The game is great for a family music activity. I guarantee your clan will love it!

Sing and play the song for a day or two before you point out anything. 

Finding old Friends: Sol and Mi

When your child is comfortable with the song, suggest that you hum it instead of singing it. Can he find a part of the song that uses "sol sol mi" just like he found in the song seesaw?

I like to use hand signs with this to help. Put hands on your head for sol, and hands on shoulders for mi.  Using the hand sings, your child will naturally find that there is a new high note at the beginning we haven't learned yet. 

Here Comes La

Let your child know that the new note's name is La. La is higher than sol and mi. Sing the song using solfege names and hand signs on the "Sol Sol La, Sol Sol Mi" patterns. 

Singing folk songs like Round and Round give children opportunities to experience another culture in a hands on and creative way. As we continue to learn new notes in our solfege scale your child is developing skills like singing, listening critically, and analyzing. Today's musical moment involves combining a rich cultural song with these important skills. 

Enjoy your musical day!