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Animal Playground – CD


Putumayo Kids Animal Playground is a lively, multilingual collection of 13 animal-themed songs from North America to Africa. Music fans of all ages will want to jump, hop and sing along to the playful, upbeat melodies of Animal Playground.

Cultural notes

  1. “Animal Crackers” – Wee Hairy Beasties (USA)
  2. “No More Monkeys” – Asheba (Trinidad and Tobago)
  3. “Apendans” – Samba Salad (The Netherlands)
  4. “If a Dinosaur Was My Friend” – Phil Melancon (USA)
  5. “Purple Elephant” – Rick Scott (Canada)
  6. “Trois Petits Cronchons” – Jean-Michel Rey et Compagnie (France)
  7. ‘The Three Bears” – Gary Rosen (USA)
  8. ‘Don’t Ever Step on a Snake” – Don Spencer (Australia)
  9. “Mbube” – Ladysmith Black Mambazo (South Africa)
  10. “Chameleon” – David Williams (USA)
  11. ‘The Littlest Birds” – The Be Good Tanyas (Canada)

Suggested activities

Books & Storytime

  • Read “We All Went On Safari”: Join a group of friends as they set out on a counting journey through the grasslands of Tanzania. Along the way, the children encounter all sorts of animals including elephants, lions and monkeys, while counting from one to ten in both English and Swahili. The lively, rhyming text is accompanied by an illustrated guide to counting in Swahili, a map, notes about each of the animals, and interesting facts about Tanzania and the Maasai people.

Music and Movement

  • Introduce some nursery rhymes about animals
  • “One elephant went out one day” – All children sit in a circle on the floor. One child gets up and imitates an elephant with one arm dangling like a trunk, and the other arm dangling behind like a tail. The child then skips around the circle while everyone sings:One elephant went out one day,
    Upon a spiders web to play,
    He / she had such tremendous fun,
    That he called for another elephant to come.The child then picks a friend to come and join him/her.
    The friend stands behind the first child in the same position holding hands, as if they are elephants in the circus.
    Everyone then continue to sing as the two elephants
    skip around them:Two elephants went out one day,
    Upon a spiders web to play,
    They had such tremendous fun,
    That they called for another elephant to come.

    This continues with each new elephant picking a friend until everyone is up. Then everyone sings for example:

    Five elephants went out one day,
    Upon a spiders web to play,
    They had such tremendous fun,
    But the web it broke and they all fell down.
     Everyone then falls to the floor

  • Old MacDonald Had a Band – This version is sung to the tune of the original, except instead of animals, he has instruments. Divide your class into groups with each one playing a different instrument (.i.e. tambourines, sticks, drums, triangles, etc.)
  • If You’re Happy and You Know It – Replace body movements with instruments. (i. e. play your drum, tap your sticks, shake your maraca, etc.)
  • Include a basket of movement props such as scarves, ribbons and feathers
  • Set up a listening station with CD’s from different cultures and encourage children to play along with the songs

Art & Craft: 

  • Create your own instruments or ‘Junk Orchestra’ using loose parts and recycled items.
  • Draw pictures of your favourite animals, or make up an animal that you would like to be real

Dramatic Play: 

  • Engage in Animal Charades
  • Animal Movements: Ask the children to move around like different animals. Can be played like charades, worked into zoo units or have a parade. You can add sound, to calm children down in the end. Pick slithery animals like snakes or stalking cats or silently swooping owls.

Community Engagement:

  • Invite a local animal welfare group, reptile show or petting zoo to visit your centre

External Links

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The research for this resource was made possible through a grant from the Central Coast Council.