Lesson 1: Learning “Rabba”

Aim: How can we recognize ornamented melodies in Music of India?
Summary: Students learn to sing “Rabba” while exploring melodic patterns and ornamentation.
Materials: Musical Explorers CD or online audio, markers or crayons, chart paper, scissors
Time Required: 30 minutes (three 10-minute activities)
Standards: GA: MK-2GM.1, MK-2GM.6, MK-2GM.7, MK-2GM.9, MK-2GM.10
SC: MGK-2.1, MGK-2.2, MGK-2.3
Vocabulary: melody, ornamentation

Meet Falu

  • Meet Falu on SG25.

Sing “Rabba”

  • Listen to “Rabba,”  cdicon_22px Track 21.
  • Learn to sing the chorus through call and response, cdicon_22px Track 22.
    • The melody is the tune in a piece of music, the part that you can sing or hum. Let’s sing the melody of “Rabba” together.


Explore Ornamentation in “Rabba”

  • Have students look at images of paisley designs found on fabrics from India on SG26.
    • What do you notice about these designs? (e.g., bright colors, shapes, etc.)
    • Indian artwork often uses decoration—something extra added to make an item more interesting. Falu uses her voice to decorate the melodies in her songs. We call this ornamentation.
  • Listen to the unornamented (or plain) version of “Rabba,” cdicon_22px Track 23.

    Have students trace the unornamented melody in the air with their fingers as Falu sings.
  • Next, listen to the ornamented (or decorated) version of “Rabba,” cdicon_22px Track 24.

    Have students sing along with Falu as they trace the ornamented melody in the air.

    • Which version is more interesting?


Creative Extension: Explore Ornamentation with Shapes

Explore ornamentation by drawing simple shapes or lines on chart paper. Add something to the drawing to ornament it. Invite students to decorate shapes on SG27
by ornamenting them with additional shapes, patterns, and colors.


Indian classical music is the historical art music of India that has been passed down for thousands of years. Classical music from North India (where Falu is from) is called “Hindustani,” while music from South India is “Carnatic.” Classical music of India is taught orally. Many Indian musicians spend years, even decades, learning from one teacher or guru.


Cultural Connection: Musical Passport
This semester, we are exploring music from different countries around the world. If you have an issued passport, bring it to show your students. Discuss the places you have traveled. Use the passport on SG28 and SG29 to travel on this international musical adventure!


Musical Word Wall

Add the words melody and ornamentation to the Musical Word Wall.


PDF Downloads

SG25 ↓ Download File

SG26 ↓ Download File

SG27 ↓ Download File

SG28 ↓ Download File

SG29 ↓ Download File


Video “Rabba”


Musical Explorers Audio Tracks