It’s been two years since I played this day care center in North Bethlehem and it was good to see some familiar faces, both kids and teachers. We decided to play on the playground in the back, in spite of the hazy, smokey atmosphere outside. Strange days. I was signed up for three sessions: 3rd – 5th graders, toddlers and then K-2nd. As always, an interesting span of ages and abilities to play for.

I was greeted by Norma Ocasio, a teacher I had worked with in the PASELA project 10 years ago. It was great to see her and know that we are still doing what we do.

The older kids were first, and right away, the older boys were less than enthused. I leaned on them early and, eventually got them up for the thunder-tube session, which worked well and brought them into the fold. Tutti Tah, I Like Peanut Butter, I Wanna Be a Dog, We Gave Names (with rhythm instr.) and Jelly in the Dish (with scarves). I did this set with the third group.

The second group was the toddlers, and it was a much more difficult group to deal with. We did simpler songs like Old MacDonald, Spider on the Floor, Down By the Bay, but still got out the scarves and instruments for some general playtime. There’s not much in the way of feedback, but that’s not the point for this age. We had fun.

I had three good sessions, but I found my voice was running a little ragged at the end, perhaps due to the atmosphere and three hours of singing out loud. I made sure the teachers got copies of my CDs to use in the classrooms, and the teachers loved the work.

I’m satisfied, and it’s nice to go to the bank right after the gig and deposit a check.