Three Singing Pigs


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Three Singing Pigs
By Kaye Umansky
Illustrated by Michael Evans
Ideas for musical development by Helen MacGregor, Jane Sebba and Sheena Roberts
Paperback (spiral bound)
Ages 4 - 7 
64 pages
This collection of children's favorite stories is packed with ideas for making music. Each of these traditional stories contains inherent musical elements: as Jack climbs his beanstalk, sounds can slide up and down; slow and fast music can be created for The Tortoise and the Hare; and high, medium, and low voices can be used for The Three Bears. These familiar storylines are intertwined with songs to sing, parts for percussion, raps to clap, and ideas for composition. Through them children learn to use and understand the elements of music.

Each story is followed by clear instructions showing how to build the story into a music lesson, with sections for activity directions, preparation, performance, and further development. Most of the stories have suggestions for both a short and a longer activity. Short activities are designed to be used with very little preparation - perhaps just reading the story beforehand or teaching yourself some simple words to a familiar tune. Longer activities are designed to explore the musical idea more thoroughly and build up to a performance. You may need to find instruments or an illustration beforehand. You will also do more preparation with the children by playing a musical game, exploring sounds, or practicing an accompaniment.

No specialist musical knowledge is needed. Many of the stories use picture scores to show corresponding actions and when they should take place; these scores are copy-permissible. Musical notation showing the melody line and chord letters is also included for each song (these scores may not be copied).   


  • Little Red Hen (rap with steady pulse to tap; game Pass the Pulse)
  • Hare & Tortoise (singing/ tapping fast & slow; game Pace Maker)
  • The Awongalema Tree (matching animal movements to sound patterns; games Guess Who, Whose Hoof, The Mountain Spirit Says Stop)
  • The Enormous Turnip (performing actions, making sounds get louder to a steady pulse; games Push Pull, Sound Snap)
  • Tiddalik (exploring & combining long sounds; game Drop Out)
  • The 3 Little Pigs (exploring & combining different sound qualities; game How Many Pigs)
  • The Shoemaker & the Elves (exploring sound qualities in "night" music & "day" music)
  • The Hairy Scary Castle (creating a texture of spooky sounds; game Inspector Spook)
  • Treasure Island (controlling sounds getting louder & quieter; games Hello Goodbye, Hunt the Treasure)
  • Noah's Ark (making a structure with repetition & contrast)
  • Goldilocks & the 3 Bears (high/ medium/ low voices)
  • The Billy Goats Gruff (high/ medium/ low voices & instruments; games Who Are You, Which Goat)
  • Jack & the Beanstalk (sounds going up & going down; game Jack's Game)


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Why did you choose this?
West Music Store
Great lessons for primary grades. Can be adapted easily for classroom technology. Great activities for dramatic play.
Loganville A on Feb 28, 2012
Great lessons for primary grades. Can be adapted easily for classroom technology. Great activities for dramatic play.
Loganville A on Feb 28, 2012
I'd like to know if this book has a CD with it?
Beth T on Mar 1, 2013
BEST ANSWER: This book does not come with a CD.

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