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Spider - Pūngāwerewere (vocal version)

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This song about a bungy-jumping spider is fun to sing with its shuffle jazz feel. For younger children use a spider puppet to show all the different actions.

It’s a good idea to divide your class in two and have one group singing the chorus and another singing the verses because they overlap in places and it’s difficult for children to breathe. This would be a good opportunity to talk to the children about breathing when they’re singing - it’s important that they learn how to breathe deeply filling their lungs and not raising the shoulders.

Younger children may like to do a dance to this song with actions that match the words - in particular jumping to the boing boing boing and changing direction when the words indicate. There are lots of action words that could be used, for example, swing, spin, catch tap, flap. Alternatively, different body percussion or untuned percussion sounds could be assigned to certain action words.

It’s interesting for children to find out how people go about writing songs. In this example first, Jenny wrote some "jazzy tappy" words, and then Laughton wrote the music. Laughton needed another verse, so Jenny wrote a bit more. Next, Laughton wrote a bass line. Laughton composes at a piano and handwrites the notation. Then he shifts to electronic keyboard, connected to computer, and prints out a finished score of the song. "We hope children will dance to the song as well as sing it. And do a lot of 'boing boings'," says Jenny.

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