Liza Jane: A great song for upper elementary

Today, I'm sharing another one of my favorite songs for fourth and fifth grade...an old standard called "Liza Jane."



I learned this song while in Kodály Level II at Capital University, with Bruce Swank. Here's the notation; it can also be found in 150 American Folk Songs.


Additional verses:
I’ve got a house in Baltimore, Lil’ Liza Jane.
Street car runs right by my door, Lil’ Liza Jane.
(Chorus)

I’ve got a house in Baltimore, Lil’ Liza Jane.
Brussels carpet on the floor, Lil’ Liza Jane.
(Chorus)

I’ve got a house in Baltimore, Lil’ Liza Jane.
Silver doorplate on the door, Lil’ Liza Jane.
(Chorus)

The song is great for several concepts. Typically, like I said in my post about the song "Sandy's Mill," I would only pull out the hardest rhythmic concept from a song to teach it, which in this case would be tam-ti, or dotted quarter/ eighth. But because the first four measures only have syncopa, or eighth/ quarter/ eighth, I've used it to teach that. Melodically, it works really well for high do! I've also used it for mi-re-do, for older beginners, by only using measure 4 (for more materials for older beginners, click here.)

As far as games go, when I learned it from Bruce, here's the hand jive he taught us: 

Students face partner.
Clap own hands, clap partner’s right hand,
clap own hands, clap partner’s left hand,
clap own hands, clap front of partner’s hands, 
clap back of partner’s hands, clap front of partner’s hands
Repeat

Clap own hands, clap partner’s right hand,
clap own hands, clap partner’s left hand,
Clap own hands, clap partner’s hands (one hand up and face down, the other hand down and face up), then switch 2x.
Repeat

I presented in North Carolina several years ago, and took video of two of the attendees doing the hand jive. Here it is in case you are a visual learner and need to see it in action!


 Pin this if you want to refer to this post later:

Liza Jane: A fun song for upper elementary music! Includes a video with the hand jive!

Looking for visuals for this song, or for ideas for syncopa? Check out these sets:

     

Happy teaching!

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2 comments

  1. Love this as all your instructional ideas, manipulatives, strategies and lesson plans you have created for your students...and mine.

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