Falling Leaves of Autumn

It’s autumn here in Tokyo, Japan, and the leaves have started to turn colors. Now beautiful reds, oranges, and yellows fill the sky. People celebrate the season outside enjoying picnics, hikes, and lots of picture taking!

Photo by Kathleen Kampa, 2020, Showa Kinen Park

My Kindergarten students delight in gathering the fallen leaves. Every morning they bring a collection of leaves to school. We sing many songs about the autumn leaves, but this one is my favorite.

If you have a xylophone or glockenspiel, you can play it by starting at the shortest bar (C) (do), and going step by step to the longest bar.

Falling Leaves Adapted by Kathy Kampa

Down, down, down, down, the leaves are falling to the ground. 

    do       ti        la       sol             fa              mi        re        do


Red, yellow, orange, and brown, the leaves are falling to the ground. 

  do       ti        la         sol             fa              mi        re        do


My students will sing this song over and over again. On the recording, the last time just slows down to signal the end of the song.

They love dancing with lightweight scarves. The color doesn’t seem to matter. They just love the way the scarves float so lightly. As students sing, they float their scarves back and forth (crossing their midline) moving their bodies lower and lower, just like the music. When they sing “Whoosh!” they scoop up the scarves and start again.

My students laugh when the scarf lands on their arm, their head, their shoulder . . . .

Here’s a video of my young learners.

I use small, lightweight hemmed scarves like these. Search for “hemmed scarves” or “juggling scarves.” Check the reviews. I like mine! Young children can practice naming the color, too.

Screen Shot 2020-03-19 at 16.55.57

This song is available on my album “Jump Jump Everyone.” For more kid-tested music and movement activities, check out my music on iTunes.

Jump Jump Everyone
Kathy has produced two music CDs for very young learners, Kathy Kampa’s Special Days and Holidays and Jump Jump Everyone, which build English language skills through movement while nurturing creativity and imagination! Grown and loved by real kids!

Kathy Kampa is a teacher, author, and teacher-trainer who specializes in working with young learners. As a PYP (Primary Years Program) teacher in Tokyo, Japan, she uses a globally-minded and inquiry-based approach to teaching through which students develop 21st century skills. She also supports the development of English language skills by creating songs, chants, and TPR/movement activities targeted to young learners’ needs.

Kathy and her husband Charles Vilina are also co-authors of Magic TimeEverybody Up, and the ELTon award-winning course Oxford Discover, published by Oxford University Press.