Tag Archives: multicultural music

Sing, Don’t Cry!

Sing Don't Cry - cover imageWelcome to our new section – posts featuring books about music.  And there are some amazing books out there that inspire children with tales of world cultures, especially through the eyes – and ears – of musical traditions!

Written and illustrated by Angela Dominguez who was born in Mexico City, this lovely book shares a very personal vision into the world of the mariachi and Mexican music traditions.  Angela’s grandfather – or abuelo – was a real life mariachi and music helped him weather the ups and downs of life.

Filling this beautiful book about Angela’s Abuelo Apolinar are stories from his actual life – a childhood accident, moving to a new city alone and other struggles. Through it all, singing and music help him stay happy and connected with the things in life that mattered most to him.

Where does the title – Sing, Don’t Cry – come from?  It’s a translation of part of Sing dont cry - book imagethe chorus of the song, Cielito Lindo.  A staple of mariachi music, Cielito Lindo was written way back in 1882 by Mexican author Quirino Mendoza y Cortés and has a beloved place in the world of Mexican music.  The chorus of the song roughly translates to… Sing, Don’t Cry, Because singing gladdens the heart.

Here’s the chorus translated and a video so you can enjoy the song, if you aren’t already familiar with it!

Ay, ay ay ay… canta no llores
Por que cantando se allegran, cielito lindo, los corazones

Ai, ai, ai ai – sing don’t cry
Because singing gladdens the heart (heavenly one, dear)

(One translation note here – the phrase cielito lindo literally means pretty little sky but is a term for a dear one or a sweetheart)

I really enjoyed this book because it speaks of the powerful connection between generations.  The grandfather in the story gets to share his big life lessons with his grandchildren as well as his music.  And clearly, his granddaughter is sharing her talent with the world as well!  You can find Sing, Don’t Cry at your local library or purchase it on Amazon, here: http://a.co/7Z65b0E .

Links And Related Resources

Author Angela Dominguez’s website: https://www.angeladominguezbooks.com/

Free Mariachi Guitar Coloring Page: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mariachi-Guitar-Coloring-Page-2511636

Three Cinco De Mayo music crafts: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Cinco-De-Mayo-Music-Crafts-2507025

Learn the song “Un Poco Loco” from the movie “Coco” http://www.tinytappingtoes.com/uncategorized/are-you-un-poco-loco-about-disneys-coco/

All About The Mexican Hot Chocolate Song: http://www.tinytappingtoes.com/uncategorized/bate-bate-its-time-for-mexican-hot-chocolate/

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Seashell Trumpets Around The World

Nagak Seashell trumpet from KoreaDid you know a seashell can be a musical instrument?

Years ago, I saw a picture of a conch shell used as a trumpet in an ancient Aztec drawing. As I’ve visited other counties, I’ve discovered that large shells have been used in many different ways in ancient and modern times, all over the world.

Here are just a few of the world music traditions that use sea shells as natural trumpets and horns.

MEXICO

In Aztec culture, the shell trumpet was very symbolic and often associated with the breath of life as well as the rhythms of the sea. Similarly, it was associated aztec conch trumpetwith the call to prayer, marking time during the day and night, rhythms of the moon, fertility and with Ehécatl – the Aztec God of the Wind.

Here is the first picture that piqued my curiosity. It is a musician called a “quiquizoani” playing the conch trumpet. Researchers found 7 different types of conch shell trumpets played in the ancient Aztec culture of Mexico. They also discovered that conch shell trumpets were used by the Aztec military in a manner similar to modern day bugles.

One of the best sites for information on Aztec instruments, including great pictures from important archeological sites is Mexicolore.com. You can find Mexico Lore’s conch shell page here: 
http://www.mexicolore.co.uk/aztecs/music/conch-trumpet

KOREA

A nagak is a large elegant seashell used as a trumpet, mainly in military parades. You can see it above in a photo of a procession at the royal place in Seoul, Korea. Also called the na, sora or godong, it is made from the shell of a sea snail that is sometimes called Triton’s Trumpet.

JAPAN

horagaiIn Japan, large conch shells called Horagai (法螺貝) (or jinkai (陣貝) have been used as trumpets for many centuries. Special schools still teach students to play the traditional music associated with the conch.

In ancient times, conch trumpets were used by certain sects of Buddhist monks to signal their movements across mountains or to accompany religious chanting. Unlike shell trumpets from other parts of the world, Japanese shell trumpets are fitted with mouthpieces of bamboo or bronze that allow them to create several different notes rather than just one single trumpet blast. Samurai used the war shell; known as the jinkai, as a communication device during battles. Playing different combination of notes would signal warriors to attack, withdraw, or change strategies during battle. Here is an example of the Japanese shell trumpet where you can hear the different notes being played:

PUEBLO CULTURE (USA)

Although the location is many days travel from the ocean, conch shell trumpets were found in the burial chambers of recently discovered (Native American) Pueblo ruins in New Mexico. You can read about what else was discovered there, here: https://makingmulticulturalmusic.wordpress.com/2017/02/22/conch-trumpets-flutes-and-turquoise-beads-treasured-items-of-an-ancient-culture/

FLORIDA (USA)

Not to be left out, there is a conch shell trumpet contest every year in the Florida Keys. Adults and kids participate and try to make beautiful music – or at least long sustained blasts – from their own gorgeous shells.

You can check out some of the champion “conch honkers” from the 50th anniversary contest in Key West, here:

Are you Un Poco Loco about Disney’s Coco?

miguel and guitar

Have you fallen in love with Disney’s Coco?

This beautifully drawn and animated new movie follows a young boy whose desire to follow his heart and make music takes him all the way to the land of the dead – and back again.  No spoilers here but I can tell you that the movie will delight the youngest to the oldest members of your family.  And it definitely will leave you singing!

One of our favorite songs from the movie is called Un Poco Loco, meaning a little bit crazy. Although it’s not a traditional mariachi song – it’s a new song composed by Germaine Franco and Adrian Molina – it has the wonderful feel and sense of humor of classic songs from this style.

If you speak Spanish, you’ll probably laugh and giggled throughout the song that weaves back and forth through both languages. If you don’t, I’ve shared the lyrics as a cheat sheet with the English translations listed next to the Spanish words.

And, do you want to continue the musical fun after you’ve seen the movie and sung along with this song? Below are several additional activities you can do to learn more about the marvelous music and magic of Mexico!

Un Poco Loco (A Little Bit Crazy)

Miguel sings – What color’s the sky?

¡Ay, mi amor! ¡Ay, mi amor! (Oh! My love, oh my love)

You tell me that it’s red

¡Ay, mi amor! ¡Ay, mi amor! (Oh! My love, oh my love)

Where should I put my shoes
?

¡Ay, mi amor! ¡Ay, mi amor! (Oh! My love, oh my love)

You say, “put them on your head”

¡Ay, mi amor! ¡Ay, mi amor! (Oh! My love, oh my love)

You make me un poco loco (a little bit crazy)

Un poquititito loco (a little, little bit crazy)
poquititito loco (little, little bit crazy)

The way you keep me guessing, I’m nodding and I’m yessing

I’ll count it as a blessing
, That I’m only un poco loco!

 (a little bit crazy)

Héctor sings: 
The loco (crazy) that you make me

It is just un poco crazy (a little bit crazy)

The sense that you’re not making

Miguel sings:
The liberties that you’re taking

Miguel and Héctor sing: 
Leaves my cabeza (head) shaking

You are just un poco loco (a little bit crazy)

Un poquititi-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-to loco!
(A little, little, little, little, little, little, little bit crazy!)

Mariachi Guitar Coloring PageLinks And Resources

Color A Mariachi Guitar - https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mariachi-Guitar-Coloring-Page-2511636

Make a Guiro - http://www.tinytappingtoes.com/uncategorized/easiest-instruments-for-young-children-the-guiro/

Three Music Crafts For 5 de Mayo - http://www.tinytappingtoes.com/uncategorized/3-great-music-crafts-for-cinco-de-mayo/

More Than 50 Freebies For Music In Our Schools Month!

Screen shot 2018-01-17 at 3.45.16 PMIn the USA, March is Music In Our Schools month!  Although it’s my opinion that music makes any school day better, it’s nice to see a whole month dedicated to how music enriches our childrens’ academic and personal lives. So, rock on, you wonderful teachers and music teachers!

And what’s better than music?  How about music freebies!  As I’ve created the multicultural music books and resources on my TPT (Teachers Pay Teachers) store, I’ve tried to break out as many freebies as possible.  I have dozens of friends that are teachers and the one thing I hear over and over again is that they lack any real budget (or any budget at all) for extra classroom materials to enrich their lessons. Especially for the diverse classroom or a classroom where the teacher wants to share world cultures through arts and music.

Several years ago I got a wonderful note from a teacher.  She thanked me for some of my freebies focusing on music traditions from Asia and India. Her manjira iconschool had just welcomed a wave of refugees from that area and they were teaching the whole school about music from Pakistan, India and Bangladesh.  One of the parents brought in traditional music and played it for the children.  The kids loved coloring the instruments they heard (from my coloring pages) and it started lots of new conversations about customs, families, holidays and favorite topics like food.  I love seeing that my resources could be used not just for learning but for inclusive activities and bringing together schools and communities.

So in that spirit, here are direct links to 20 of my most popular freebies, but you can also follow me on TPT or bookmark the freebie section as new items are being added almost every week.  Just drop by and visit me at:  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/World-Music-With-Daria

Coloring Pages

Color Your Own Panpipes  - https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Color-the-Zamponas-Panpipes-From-The-Andes-650601

Color Your Own Tabla Drums – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Tabla-Drums-Free-Coloring-Page-2682617

Mariachi Guitar Coloring PageColor Your Own Mariachi Guitar – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mariachi-Guitar-Coloring-Page-2511636

Color Your Own Ukulele – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Ukulele-Coloring-Page-3017260

Color Your Own Egyptian Rattle -  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Color-An-Ancient-Egyptian-Rattle-The-Sistrum-2166721

Color Your Own Andean Drum – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Color-A-Bombo-A-Drum-From-The-Andes-650642

Color Your Own Doumbek Middle Eastern Drum – shttps://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Middle-Eastern-Drums-Doumbek-Background-Coloring-Page-2049118

Color Your Own Tabla Drums Mongolian Horsehead Fiddle – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mongolian-Horsehead-Fiddle-Free-Coloring-Page-3578368

Instrument Making Activities

Make Your Own Chinese Gong – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Make-Your-Own-Chinese-Gong-From-Recycled-Materials-486935

cajon iconMake Your Own Cajón Box Drum – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/The-Cajon-Make-And-Play-Your-Own-Box-Drum-1236616

Make Your Own Button Castanets – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Button-Castenets-Tutorial-3436732

Make Your Own Easy African Drum - https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Make-Your-Own-African-Drum-Craft-3507618

Introduction To World Music Instruments

How Is A Didgeridoo Made?  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/How-is-A-Didgeridoo-Made-3429295

WIA didgeridooWhat is A Quijada Jawbone Instrument – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/What-is-a-Quijada-Jawbone-Instrument-1406336

What Are Chapchas?
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Color-The-Chapchas-An-Instrument-from-The-Andes-650050

What Is The Puerto Rican Cuatro?
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Cuatro-National-Instrument-of-Puerto-Rico-Free-Coloring-Page-3485455

World Music and Popular Song Lyric Sheets

The Earth Day Song – Lyric Sheet
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Earth-Day-Song-Lyric-Sheet-2451013

The I Have A Dream Song MLK Day – Lyric Sheet
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/MLK-Day-Song-I-Have-A-Dream-Free-Lyric-Sheet-2292068

Here Come Our Mothers - Lyric SheetA Mother’s Day Song From Africa – Lyric Sheet
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mothers-Day-Song-From-Africa-Free-Lyric-Sheet-2533301

Chinese New Year Song – Lyric Sheet
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Gong-Xi-Gong-Xi-Free-Lyric-Sheet-3629553

Gong Xi Gong Xi – What Does The Chinese New Year Song Mean?

Screen shot 2018-02-06 at 3.41.48 PM

The phrase Gong Xi Gong Xi resounds everywhere during Chinese New Year. In fact, one translation of the New Years song explains:

(In) Every big street (and) little alley
The first sentence (we) say
When (we) see each other)

Must be” “Congratulations! Congratulations!”
Congratulations! Congratulations!
Congratulations to you!

Since it is so popular, some may think it’s a traditional song or folksong, but it was written by a popular Chinese composer, Chen Gexin, with the original title: Wishing You Prosperity and Happiness.  The literal meaning of “Gong Xi” is “congratulations”. Written by Chen Gexin on the occasion of China’s liberation after the Sino-Japanese war in 1945, the lyrics use the most popular New Year’s phrase and talk about the coming of Spring, so the song quickly became a favorite during Chinese New Year celebrations.

Here’s a version that shows the Chinese characters and gives tips on pronouncing the lyrics to the song:

Here’s a fun bilingual version of a different Chinese New Years Song with lyrics in Chinese and English. Even though it’s a different song, you can hear the same chorus of Gong Xi Gong Xi, that rings out everywhere during this beautiful and happy celebration.

Links and Resources

Gong Xi Gong Xi- About The Song Plus Lyrics https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Chinese-New-year-Song-Gong-Xi-Gong-Xi-3629545

Gong Xi Gong Xi – Free Lyric Sheet (Pinyin and English)
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Gong-Xi-Gong-Xi-Free-Lyric-Sheet-3629553

Chinese New Year Astrology Chart – Find Your Birth Year Here! https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Chinese-Astrology-Chart-What-Lunar-Year-Is-It-2377484b
Make Your Own Chinese Gong – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Make-Your-Own-Chinese-Gong-From-Recycled-Materials-486935
bolang-gu-craft-versionMake a Bolang Gu – Monkey Drum https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Monkey-Drum-Chinese-New-Year-Drum-Craft-1748044

Color an Erhu – A Two-Stringed Chinese Violin https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/The-Erhu-Chinese-Violin-Instruments-From-Around-The-World-1037355

Travel To Mongolia and Discover The Morin Khuur!

It’s wonderful if you can travel with your children to beautiful and exotic places around the world.  But, if you can’t, you can always spend time reading about other countries, discovering their cultures and listening to their unique and beautiful traditional music.

Can you imagine a trip to Mongolia?  Known as the “Land of the Eternal Blue Sky, it’s the birthplace of Ghengis Khan and home to camels and reindeer.  It’s a place of extreme temperatures and equally striking beauty.  It’s theScreen shot 2018-01-17 at 3.45.16 PM birthplace of “throat-singing” and the home of an instrument called morin khuur.

The morin khurr or horsehead fiddle is the national instrument of Mongolia and is often said to symbolize the deep and connected relationship between horses and people in this region of the world.  Similar to the erhu from China, it has only 2 string and is played with a bow.  You can hear it’s unique sound and playing style in this video of a song titled “My Father. My Hero”.

We’ve just created a morin khurr poster and freebie coloring page as part of our “Stringed Instruments of The World” series. You can find a link to them below.  If you’d like to visit other regions of the world through music, you can also check out some of our other music mini-courses below.

Links and Resources

Morin Khuur -Freebie coloring page -  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mongolian-Horsehead-Fiddle-Free-Coloring-Page-3578368

Morin Khuur – poster and coloring page - https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/The-Morin-Khuur-Mongolian-Fiddle-3578353

Visit Australia – Music Mini-Series -  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Australian-Aboriginal-Instruments-Music-Mini-Course-2816723

Instruments of India coverVisit India – Music Mini-Series – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Instruments-of-India-Mini-Course-2682389

Visit The Andes – E-Book and CD – https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Childs-Life-In-The-Andes-E-Book-Plus-Music-CD-639838

Hispanic Heritage – Music Craft And Coloring Book https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Celebrate-Hispanic-Heritage-Musical-Craft-And-Coloring-E-Book-1427919

4 Recycled Thanksgiving Music Crafts!

Daria's homemade gongRecycle, Upcycle – Repurpose!

Isn’t it great to find ways to use items that might be a part of your holiday celebration.  Instead of tossing them into the trash, you can turn  them into treasure.   Well, maybe not treasure, but definitely great kids music crafts that can provide hours of fun while you’re relaxing during or after a wonderful celebration.

Here’s our 4 fav holiday craft re-makes.

Turkey Roasting Pan into A Gong

Seriously, is there a better way to get the whole group together than to bang a gong? Let the kids use the extra turkey roasting pan to create this wonderful Chinese-style gong to mark time at your celebration.  Decorate it with your Chinese zodiac animals – the chart of Chinese Zodiac animals is part of this pdf – or just apply pure creativity!

DARIA’s Chinese Gong Freebie on TPThttps://buff.ly/2mTkrU4

Ocean drum completePie Box Ocean Drum

We love this craft. There’s a cool little window built right in so you can see what’s making the sound of the sea in your ocean drum. This simple craft sounds remarkable and is wonderfully relaxing!

DARIA’s Ocean Drum Craft Posthttps://buff.ly/2zZPGCm

Turn Your Coffee Can into An Africa Style Drum

Screen shot 2014-02-06 at 12.05.42 PMWho doesn’t love a hand drum? Here’s a super simple way to turn the empty coffee cans into a child-size hand drum.

Coffee Can Hand Drum From DARIA’s Website (Look Under African Drum) http://www.dariamusic.com/crafts.php

pencil beater on drumA Beater For Those Drums!

While you’ve got a gong and a hand drum, you might want to make your own easy beaters. Opt for unsharpened pencils or go for a nature walk and find sticks that can create sturdy basic beaters for any drum you may have or make.

DARIA’s Easy Drum Beaters Posthttps://buff.ly/2hbREba

 

Learn A Song In Quechua for Native American Heritage Month

yaw yaw girlNovember is Native American Heritage Month and it’s a great time to connect with the rich cultures that exist thoroughout North and South America – as well as the world. Here’s an easy song to learn and sing that comes from Quechua culture and I’m proud to say that my version of this folksong from Peru is being used by children’s choruses across the USA.

What Is Quechua?

Quechua is a beautiful indigenous language that was spoken widely throughout South America during the time of the Incas.  When Spanish Conquistadors arrived at that continent, dialects of Quechua were spoken in countries now known as Ecuador, Peru, Chile and Bolivia as well as the southern part of Columbia and the northern regions of Argentina.

Yaw, Yaw, Puka Polleracha

So here’s the song and a video of the song. The lyrics are simple. Someone is calling to a girl in the red skirt (puka = red, polleracha = skirt, yaw = hey). The person singing says “I saw what you did and I am going to tell your mom and dad on you!”

Learn More About Quechua and A Child’s Life In The Andes

If you like the song, you can find the complete lyric sheet, plus two language freebies below. These are a great way to learn about Quechua and get a sense of what the language sounds like and what some common words and phrases are.

zampoña boyAnd remember, all folk songs that come from a specific culture describe life in that world.  If you enjoy the song, you might like to check out my E-book: A Child’s Life In The Andes that shares more about the music, the food, the chores and the day to day life of children in this beautiful indigenous culture.

Links And Resources

Yaw Yaw – Lyric Sheet (TPT Freebie) - https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Yaw-Yaw-Puka-Polleracha-Free-Lyric-Sheet-Song-In-Quechua-3340027

Quechua Mini-Lesson for Kids (TPT Freebie) https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Quechua-Language-Mini-Lesson-For-Kids-Colors-Numbers-And-Common-Words-2825911

Learn About Quechua Language – For Kids (TPT Freebie) https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Quechua-Language-For-Kids-Verbs-Common-Phrases-and-Notes-on-Spelling-2825952

Yaw Yaw Sheet Musichttps://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Yaw-Yaw-Puka-Polleracha-Sheet-Music-2707454

A Child’s Life In the Andes E-Book and CD of Andean Music https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Childs-Life-In-The-Andes-E-Book-Plus-Music-CD-639838

Win A Beautiful New Spanish Language Book + CD!

Cantale

We just found out that one of our favorite fellow bloggers is reviewing AND giving 5 copies of the beautiful new CD/Book set seen above – “Cántale A Tu Bebé”  (Sing To Your Baby!).

If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably already singing to your little ones and this Spanish language set can make it even easier and more fun to combine music and language learning at the same time.  It’s perfect for bilingual parents, Spanish-speaking parents or families learning Spanish.

Read the entire post for the story of the book and cd set, check out the info on bilingualism for baby or skip directly to the contest at the bottom of this page to enter and win!  http://www.biculturalmama.com/2017/09/music-book-baby-singing.html

Good luck and  don’t forget to …“Cántale A Tu Bebé” (Sing To Your Baby!)

Discover Music Of Iceland With Children

For many people, Iceland is a dream vacation. It’s a land of geysers, glaciers, Langspilvolcanoes, thermal lagoons, whales, exotic seabirds and gorgeous scenery. If you’re on your way to the land of ice with your children or if you are simply studying this part of the world, here’s a fun way to explore the music of that culture.

Color A Langspil

One of the traditional instruments of Iceland is a stringed zither called the langspil. Dating back at least to the 1700’s, this instrument was often made of driftwood and played either by plucking it or using a bow, like a fiddle. The resulting sound was haunting and beautiful. You can hear a langspil in this video from an outstanding folk duo from Iceland, Duo Svanni (Júlía Traustadóttir Kondrup and Hildur Wågsjö Heimisdóttir).

Iceland For Kids!

Music is a wonderful place to start any exploration of another country or culture. Below you can find links to fun facts, common phrases in Icelandic, traditional clothing, things to do with children in Iceland and a post about an Icelandic rock music group that actually recorded a video of a song inside a volcano.

Enjoy your Icelandic Adventure!

Links And Resources

Free Langspil Coloring Page: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Langspil-Icelandic-Instrument-Coloring-Page-3362012

Kyra - Iceland - WaterfallLangspil Mini-poster, Coloring page + Activities:  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Langspil-Icelandic-Instrument-Mini-Poster-Coloring-Page-3362044

Iceland Facts For Kids: http://www.kids-world-travel-guide.com/iceland-facts.html

Icelandic Words And Phrases To Learn: https://icelandwithkids.com/2017/03/26/icelandic-words-and-phrases-to-learn-or-not/

Traditional Clothing Of Iceland:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Icelandic_national_costume

Iceland With Kids – A Family of Seven Visit Iceland And Offer Tips and Info
https://icelandwithkids.com/

Icelandic Music From Inside A Volcano: https://makingmulticulturalmusic.wordpress.com/2016/06/22/rocking-icelandic-music-from-inside-a-volcano/