Aha, I’ve discovered that this song can be played using F and Am – Easy-easy-peasy-peasy!
You can get the words and the chords here:
First of all, click +5 on the transpose bar. That will put it into the right key.
Secondly, ignore all the variations (unless you are teaching in ADVANCED MODE, which I certainly am NOT!). Just use F and Am all the way through.
You might want to just stick to the first verse…
Here’s a brief outline of the process I went through (I had a backing track in F/Am from my trusty “Ukulele for Kids” book). If you don’t have a backing track, then… create your own, maybe? Record some friends singing and playing it?
- Listen to the track, keeping the pulse quietly
- Talk about the song and the words, The Beatles etc
- Listen again, noticing the chords and strum signals
- Listen again, calling out the chords as they change
- I then demonstrated on my ukulele chord C (which I call “1-2-3 Easy Peasy C” and tend to use as a starting point for teaching most chords), followed by chord F, using fingers 1 and 2, followed by chord Am (“just unglue finger 1”). I did this a couple of times.
- I invited children to come forward as see if they could do C followed by F followed by Am – chose about four individuals
- Give out the ukuleles and let them practice. The children already know to check that the ukuleles sound the song “My Dog Has Fleas” – G C E A – and bring them to me for tuning if necessary.
- As a whole class, play four C chords. AND STOP. I count them in; 1 2 3 4 C C C C
- Repeat with four F chords.
- Repeat with four Am chords. This is probably overkill, but I am also trying to teach the idea of “following instructions” to this class!
- Repeat with four F chords followed by four Am chords and F chords again and Am chords again AND STOP.
- We are good to go!
This lesson worked really well – the children enjoyed the song and were more than capable of singing and playing it.