New Games for the Secondary Classroom: One Rainy Night

New Games for the Secondary Classroom: One Rainy Night

One Rainy Night

Melody by Deborah Smith, Lyrics and game by Jenny Gillan


Thanks to Deborah Smith for the time we’ve spent together writing games and collating resources.  Your generosity as an educator and friend is so much appreciated! Thank you again to my students at the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School for their enthusiastic participation. Especially to the students from Orientation Week who came in especially. Also to colleagues Melinda Sawers and Sue Lyons and ex students Leighton and Jem for lending their expertise.  None of this would be possible without James Lauritz who filmed it all, donated his time and skill and was such an ease and pleasure to work with.  Thank you, James!



Teaching Purpose: I IV V harmony                    fa and ti approached scalically & in a Major context.


Formation: Two circles with inner circle facing towards outer circle.


Actions on quaver pulses:

  1. Cross hands over chest (Starts on the lyric ‘One’)
  2. Both hands tap legs
  3. Clap
  4. Clap partner’s right hand
  5. Clap
  6. Clap partner’s left hand
  7. Clap both partner’s hands


These games are designed to be part of a five minute segment in a music classroom setting. Each time the song is experienced, another more complex element is added. These videos demonstrate an experience of the songs after many different five minute segments.


The songs use rhythmic or melodic elements which students then use in their musical dictations, improvisation and reading. Games enable students to experience these elements in context as well as develop coordination and provide enjoyable singing experiences.


Suggested timeline for playing this game


First Five Minute Segment: Learn song. I teach this song by having the actions for the words, for example pointing to my watch for ‘late’, opening a book for ‘tell me a tail’ . As there are a fair few lyrics it takes some time to get this down.


Second Experience: Review song, Sing with clapping pattern, just in partners without moving.


Third Experience: Review song and first action. Learn song with outside circle moving after every two phrases.


Forth Experience: Review song and known actions, move after every phrase.


Fifth Experience: Inner and outer circle move after two phrases.


Sixth Experience/Extension: Inner and outer circle move after every phrase.