I put together this simple djembe piece for a mixed year 3 and year 4 class I have this year. They year 4 children had djembe lessons last year with another teacher, and have already done most of my favourite djembe pieces, so I’m constantly having to things of songs and pieces that they don’t know!
There are three djembe parts, and also a call-and-response to use for the introduction. It’s going pretty well; I’m having to work on getting the children to be more accurate about using Bass and Tone (hence the word for djembe part 3) as they tend to be a bit random. The djembe parts seem to work together nicely, although so far I have only tried two parts at a time.
I have incorporated the name of the school and the name of the class eg “This Village-School” and “Middle Class” (not the real names!) into the chants, which has met with great approval from the children. You might have to adapt the rhythm, or the name of the school to make it fit if you wanted to try this one.
Ideas for performance? OK, Call and response, and into djembe 1. Either maintain this for an agreed number of repeats, or they watch for a signal and countdown. Call and response, and into djembe 2. Then again to get into djembe 3. The leader then signals to a section of the circle (or line) of children to move to djembe 1, and another section to move to djembe 2 like this: Point to a group, mouth/signal “djembe 1”, count them in and check they are settled into the rhythm. If all goes well you can switch everyone several times, then get them all playing the same pattern again.
Count down/signal the ending – repeat the call and response, but this time at the end of the call “1, 2, readysteady readysteady” , everyone responds “BASS” together.