Wednesday 16 December 2015

First Song in Outer Space - Wednesday 16th December - Advent 16


The last class lessons of the year.

I entertained myself by teaching the reception children (aged 4 to 5 years old) a simple dance to the Jingle Bells song. Oh, was I supposed to be doing Proper Teaching? I suppose it was reasonably proper teaching. Moving to music keeping in time to the pulse. Or something.

So, you can try it at home now; form up the children, cats, dogs, or whatever (whoever) into two lines, facing each other. As you all sing "Jingle Bells", each line takes one step towards each other, and again for the second "Jingle Bells". As you sing "Jingle all the way" carry on, moving past each other so that the two sides have swapped sides. Just clap in time to the music as you sing "OhwhatfunitistorideinaonehorseopensleighHEY!". Then repeat the "moves" for the jingly bit, and do some more clapping for the "Ohwhatfun" bit. That worked brilliantly. (Probably because I showed them with my fingers walking over the carpet, and then with just one pair of children, then two pairs of children, what to do).

However, when I tried to make it more exciting by having the children process down the set and back up again during the "Ohwhatfun" bit, instead of clapping, it all became a bit muddled. The children who understood what to do became very indignant about the children who got it wrong, so in the end we all sat down and made little balls from crumpled paper and passed them around (threw them at each other) in time so a song.

Oh look! Time to stop and go out to play!

Off they went, and we teachers went off too for a nice sit down and a cup of tea.

Oh, look what I found on - exactly 50 years ago today


First song in outer space

"Jingle Bells" was the first song broadcast from space, in a Christmas-themed prank by Gemini 6 astronauts Tom Stafford and Wally Schirra. While in space on December 16, 1965, they sent this report to Mission Control:
Gemini VII, this is Gemini VI. We have an object, looks like a satellite going from north to south, up in a polar orbit. He's in a very low trajectory traveling from north to south and has a very high climbing ratio. It looks like it might even be a ... Very low. Looks like he might be going to reenter soon. Stand by one ... You might just let me try to pick up that thing.
The astronauts then produced a smuggled harmonica and sleigh bells and broadcast a rendition of "Jingle Bells." The harmonica, shown to the press upon their return, was a Hohner "Little Lady," a tiny harmonica approximately one inch long, by 3/8 of an inch wide.

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