The Clock Song is an excellent way to learn musical note values. It helps kids to understand and recognise the difference between Minims (or 1/2 notes), Crotchets (1/4 notes) and Quavers (1/8 notes) by making it into a fun game. It’s a simple activity that makes the musical concept clear, and the note names and values easy to remember.
Using the the printable sheet (scroll down and click the picture to download).
- First, discuss the three different types of clock shown in the picture.
- Then clap and chant the sound that they make together.
- Slow, long tick-tocks for the Grandfather clock.
- Medium length tick-tocks for the kitchen clock.
- Fast, little tick-tocks for the little watch.
- Then sing the song together whilst pointing at each clock and demonstrating the tick-tocks with wooden sticks.
- Sing the song a few times while you pass the wooden sticks round the circle.
The Clock Song
Grandfather Clock goes
t-i-ck to-ck, ti-ck to-ck, ti-ck to-ck,
Mummy’s kitchen clock goes
tick tock tick tock tick tock tick tock,
My little watch goes
tick-tock tick-tock tick-tock tick-tock
tick-tock tick-tock tick-tock tick-tock.
Chime Bar Tune
An Easy Way To learn Musical Note Values
- Once they’ve mastered the song, here’s a fun activity.
- Blow some magic on your hands and rub it on your feet – a useful way to encourage enthusiastic participation!
- Then you can sing the song while taking steps in time to the tick-tocks.
- Big steps for the Grandfather clock.
- Medium steps for the kitchen clock.
- fFast little steps for the watch.
- Using the wooden sticks you can then test them on the note values by playing the three tick-tocks in a different order, and asking them which is which.
If you want to see how The Clock Song fits into a music lesson plans for kids of a variety of ages take a look at my Clocks and Mice lesson plan.
If you are new to music theory, read my Introducing the Note Family post, which explains basic note values in a child friendly way and check out my How To Read Music Made Easy ebook which is accompanied by lots of handy printables and worksheets.