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  • Writer's pictureJenny Ferris

From Wibbleton to Wobbleton

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Back To School joint workshop hosted by VOSA (Victorian Orff Schulwerk Association) and KMEIA (Kodaly Music Education Institute of Australia).

While I was there I was lucky enough to observe an Orff workshop (I know, stepping outside of my comfort zone!) with the wonderful Melissa Dods (past VOSA president).

In the workshop I learned a new favourite chant, called "From Wibbleton to Wobbleton", which goes as follows:

From Wibbleton to Wobbleton is 15 miles

From Wobbleton to Wibbleton is 15 miles

From Wibbleton to Wobbleton, from Wobbleton to Wibbleton

From Wibbleton to Wobbleton is 15 miles.

I know, quite the tongue-twister!

After learning the chant, we proceeded to add layer after layer of complexity, including a hand-clapping game where Wibbleton is tapped on your shoulders, Wobbleton is tapped on your knees, "15 miles" is clapped with a partner and any beats in between are clapped by yourself.

We then learned a "travelling rhyme":

It's only 10 miles as the crow flies (croak twice like a crow: Craaw! Craaw!)

It's only 10 miles as the crow flies (Craaw! Craaw!)

In blue skies, with yellow eyes,

It's only 10 miles.

During the travelling rhyme, students walk the beat around a circle, flapping their arms like wings for every crow call. They make a rainbow sign (waving their arms above their head) for the "blue skies" and then gesture to their eyes (in a very 70's disco style which I loved) for "yellow eyes".

The two chants can then be layered over the top of one another in canon (the travelling rhyme starting after 4 beats).

We then progressed to mallet percussion instruments, adding a simple bourdon for the first rhyme and a pentatonic scale improvisation for the travelling rhyme.

All of these details and more can be found in the book "From Wibbleton to Wobbleton" by James Harding

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