Sarah Barchas was a teacher and school librarian with Tucson Unified School District for over 30 years, using song and storytelling as key sources to motivate learning. She was also a consultant singer/storyteller in Multicultural Awareness through Storytelling and Song for three additional years. She is a singer/songwriter, rancher and publisher.
Sarah has founded High Haven Music, "a little company with big dreams." Her small independent publishing company has commitment to bring joy to children and families through song and storytelling in its sound recordings with accompanying illustrated lyrics books.
This CD evolved from her 20 years of working in a wonderful school, Hollinger Elementary School, in Tucson, Arizona, with predominantly Spanish-speaking and bilingual students. It evolved from focus on bilingual, biliterate education to give each student pride in sense of self, culture and traditions and strength in skill in both languages with the many doors that can then be open to them for life-time learning and opportunities. Most of all, it evolved from wanting every child to feel pride in heritage and the contributions each can make now and in the future.
The songs on this CD are for a wide span of ages from preschool to elementary grades and above, for schools, libraries, and family enjoyment. The CD physical package includes a 36- page illustrated lyrics book with words to all of the songs. The 20 songs include original songs by Sarah Barchas and bilingual adaptations of much loved traditional songs. These songs have been child tested for many years with great enjoyment. Spanish language consultants were Marilyn McClure and Analizabeth Doan Woolfolk. Illustrations were by Elizabeth Gething and David Hoffman. The dynamic bilingual De Colores Chorus and effective instrumental background make this a real winner. Excellent for multicultural, bilingual, ESL, SSL.
The twenty original and traditional songs with exuberance, fun, and zest share holidays and history ("Cinco de Mayo" & "The 16th of September" and "Es el dia de dar gracias," " It's the day of Thanksgiving"); festivities ("Pinata!" and "Las Mananitas"), contributions ("Hispanic Americans"); foods ("Oh How Delicious Are Hot Tamales"); delight in knowing two languages ("De Colores," "All the Colors," "In Spanish, en Espanol," "It's Fun to be Bilingual," "Leamos! Let's Read!", and even three languages "Languages We Speak"). There are also several enjoyable songs about animals: " Mi Granja (My Farm)," "Los Pollitos/Little Chicks," "Mariposa," and "Red Bird" and "Pajaro rojo." The lovely song "Arco Iris" celebrates a beautiful rainbow.
"Songs can create bridges and links across all ages and backgrounds, bringing people together in unique ways that can forever become part of our individuality and interweave with our life experiences. By sharing ideas, feelings, values and joy through song, we can connect with some of the best of what it means to be human." - Sarah Barchas
Reviews - Recommended:
*ALA American Library Association) - Children's Jukebox (2nd ed. 2007) Multiple recommended title listings
*Elementary School Library Collection (2000) "Fun for sing-alongs in schools with Spanish-speaking students , where Spanish is taught, or as an enrichment for Multicultural studies."
*Booklist, 5/15/98: "The accompanying booklet contains all the lyrics, expanding the usefulness of this package to bilingual classrooms and preschools."
*Parent Council, S/98: "Her unique style captivates, and it is virtually impossible to listen to this tape without learning some Spanish."
*Creative Classroom, Sept. -Oct., 2001
*Selected by Children's Music Hall of Fame, 2007
*ALA - (Robert Reid) Something Musical Happened in the Library (2007) - Features song "Oh How Delicious Are Hot Tamales"
*Cinco De Mayo Thematic Activity Book by Korena Lund (2010) - Features song "Cinco de Mayo" and also includes song "The 16th of September"