At our weekly homeschool co op meeting, I get to lead a short time of singing school at the beginning of the day. Last year, I got to teach Singing School as a 50-minute class every week to the kids in 2nd-6th grades. It was so much fun, and I loved watching the kids grow in their diligence, skill, understanding, and confidence. This is the third co op where I have taught Singing School, and it is always fun to bring a new challenge to a group of Christian kids and their mamas. I am never quite sure if what I bring to the table is what they expect… but they had to know what was coming at them because I start the first class off by handing out my packet of vision, resources, information, and selected songs. It’s probably a bit much at the getgo… but people adapt and grow to love it. It’s music, it’s God’s word, it’s communal creativity ~ what’s not to love?!
This year, I get ten minutes each week with all the ages – from my little one year old, up through all the mamas. It’s a broad range of skill levels and loves. But I approach it the same way I always approach Singing School: dive in, dig deep. It is worth pushing hard for beautiful music. It is worth prioritizing singing praise to God and making a joyful noise unto Him. It is worth memorizing long texts when they are beautifully composed poetic lyrics or excerpts from Scripture.
I love to teach solfege (do re mi fa sol la ti, etc) and kodaly hand signs (which are hand positions connected to each syllable of solfege), conducting patterns and musical terminology. But more than that, I love simply scooping up the people around me, and gathering them into a piece of music – no strings attached – just sing with me. Let’s simply tune our voices to sing His praise. Let’s combine our individual voices into one sonorous line to bless the ears of our Maker.
I firmly believe that He delights over us. Zephaniah 3 says that He sings over us! How could we not, in His image, sing over Him in return?! Let us shout for joy and be glad, let us rejoice in the days He makes, let us offer to Him a psalm of thanksgiving! And let us exhort one another, teaching each other in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs while today is yet called today.
It is good to lift our voices.
Let us not grow weary in doing good.
Let us not give up this calling or cower beneath governors who want to shut our mouths.
They need the gospel.
We need to sing.
Today I assigned Psalm 100 (to the familiar tune of the Doxology) as well as a favorite Jamie Soles version of the Kings of Israel. I am hoping that my kids and I can have these two things memorized by the time we go back to co op on December 1st. But the Kings of Israel is quite the tongue twister, so it’s aiming high! 😉
We are also continuing to revisit other songs we have introduced to our co op for memory already this year: The Lord’s Prayer, The Patriarchs, The Books of the Bible, The Ten Commandments, Psalm 8, and Psalm 47.
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all ye lands! Amen!
His Steadfast Love Endures Forever
A Psalm for giving thanks.
100 Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!
2 Serve the LORD with gladness!
Come into his presence with singing!
3 Know that the LORD, he is God!
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name!
5 For the LORD is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.