Come Jam With Me Curriculum

Elementary Classroom Use

Elementary Classroom Use

ADAPTING THE KIDS’ JAM/Come Jam With Me CURRICULUM FOR MUSIC EDUCATORS

Lui directing a song on bells

For the lower elementary music teacher hoping to expand their repertoire of age-appropriate traditional and contemporary songs, Kids' Jam/Come Jam With Me is an outstanding resource. Combining traditional songs gleaned from late 1800's and early 1900's songbooks, and original songs composed specifically for the curriculum, Lui has complied an exceptional collection of songs for the early elementary school community.  She has brought her background in the areas of composition, traditional music, and education together to choose and adapt traditional songs to meet the requirements of a program for this age group.  This has occasionally meant significantly altering lyrics and/or musical settings, while honoring the tradition at their core. Her goal has been to create a music curriculum that is both engaging and educational.  The songs she has written specifically for the Kids' Jam/Come Jam With Me curriculum keep that same goal in mind.

Repertoire For Community Gatherings

The Kids' Jam/Come Jam With Me curriculum is designed to build a repertoire of songs that can be shared in the family and school community. Each collection in the curriculum contains an assortment of original and traditional songs, including many nature-based songs celebrating the four seasons of the year. Many of the songs are appropriate for seasonal gatherings or performances for the school community without being religious in nature.

Ear Training

A number of the songs include solfège verses, to provide interval training as preparation for later formal instrument or vocal study.  They can be used as specific ear training exercises, or to reinforce other solfège work done in the classroom.

Kids' Jam or Come Jam With Me?

The songs and singing games in the two programs, Kids' Jam and Come Jam With Me, are identical. The difference is that the Kids' Jam collections are mixed-age collections, available in CD and printed Songbook format. There are 8 seasonal collections, spanning 2 years. They would be suitable to use as an adjunct to your music program, or if you wish to structure it yourself. Although Lui no longer teaches the in-person Kids' Jam classes, the collections are still available at this time as CDs and printed songbooks. Contact Lui directly to inquire about obtaining these.

Come Jam With Me is a more comprehensive music program, arranged in 3 levels of progressive difficulty, with 4 seasonal collections in each level. All materials are provided electronically, plus CD's are available as an option. Come Jam With Me includes weekly classes for Fall, Winter and Spring (10 weeks in each season), where Lui leads songs, singing games, and ear training games, including solfège patterns using Curwen hand signs, and rhythm patterns. Some songs have suggested ASL sign arrangements; Lui teaches the ASL signs in class, and the Resource Library includes demonstration videos or written descriptions of the ASL signs.

INTEGRATING KIDS’ JAM/Come Jam With Me INTO THE ACADEMIC CLASSROOM

Kids' Jam is fun for the teacher too

In addition to Kids' Jam/Come Jam With Me being a strong music curriculum in and of itself, the songs are ideal for inclusion in classroom academic studies.  Many of the songs are nature-based -often specifically related to a particular season - and celebrate the natural world.  These are excellent candidates for multi-curricular studies, in combination with academic subjects such as earth sciences, biology, botany, ecology environmental studies.  Other songs can be tied into art, social sciences, and character education.

In these days of budget cuts for arts, the Kids' Jam/Come Jam With Me curriculum is ideal for arts enrichment in the classroom itself, both through the use of the recordings and the songbook.  The songs are recorded live in the studio using only acoustic instruments and simple duo arrangements with vocals, guitar, banjo, slide guitar, and mandolin.  They may be played in the classroom, or the classroom teacher can use the recordings and songbook to learn songs to integrate into the school day.  The Kids' Jam songbook provides guitar chords, with instructions for using a capo to simplify guitar arrangements. If you would like a more structured curriculum, consider using Come Jam With Me, with its 3 progressive levels of difficulty and weekly online classes.

I recommend using the songbooks only as an adjunct to the recordings. Folk music is an oral tradition, after all! As carefully as I transcribed the songs onto paper, there are nuances in the singing of the songs that I could not capture on the music staff. Families using the curriculum directly will want to learn the songs primarily from the recordings; for classroom teachers and music educators I recommend doing the same and using the sheet music as it was intended, as a reference for words, guitar chords, and singing game instructions. - Lui

Comments from Teachers

I incorporated Lui's Come Jam With Me program into my class routine to round out the education of my second-graders. The music is fun and the activities were a nice complement to work on academic subjects. This program provides an affordable, accessible alternative to conventional music programs that are being cut in favor of training for standardized tests.