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#66 Treble Clef Kenyan Flag & Tails - "African Safari Practicing Adventure" 3/6

Updated: Jul 5, 2023

By Christy | The Practicing Pro

Read the Blog HERE and get your FREE African Safari Practicing (2 of 6) Adventures.

You can also Watch / Listen to the Live HERE where I share part 3 of HOW I happened to suddenly find myself teaching music in a remote Kipsigis village one day 6 years ago! I brought a violin with me on each of the trips. I can’t wait to share with you what happened to those two violins!

Hello practicing parents and teachers,

It's time to release level THREE of the "African Safari Practicing Adventure" and with it - another story!

You have finished level TWO and are ready for your award and to proceed on to the next adventure - level THREE. Hurray! Great work!

In case you missed levels one and two, no worries! When you sign up HERE, I'll send you all of the previous activities in order.

For all of you who have finished your level TWO - the award for completing your level is…



This is what it looks like in the PDF - just print, cut out and glue or tape on

One of the activity sheets is discovering what the tails look like of various safari animals, and the other is some fun note naming to make and learn a Kenyan flag. Fun right?

For teachers of parents with multiple children practicing at home - make a sheet with MULTIPLE crocodiles on it for you to save paper and make it easier.

There are 200 plus students at my school doing this activity right now, so I definitely used this option and even cut out a few paper layers at one time!

Let’s take a look at the two activities a little closer.

Crocodiles are such impressive reptiles. And POWERFUL! I love visiting Florida and watching alligators there. They are fascinating to me and I love looking for them in the Everglades. However, speaking of reptiles, did you know that I used to have a very old iguana and it died while I was teaching violin lessons?

My husband Mark is a paramedic. He works each day with a partner in the ambulance. One day his regular partner was sick and he had a new person cover their shift. He was chatting with them about some struggles my son was having at the time. “I have just the thing for him”, she exclaimed! She offered to give him the iguana they had gotten from a friend who was moving away and couldn’t take it with her. My husband called me up and said he was bringing home a lizard after work that day for a surprise to check if it was ok. I cleaned off a part of my son’s dresser and was all ready. A little lizard, what fun!

To my surprise, and to Mark’s, he came home with a HUGE cage and a HUGE iguana. I was thinking we were in for a tiny terrarium and a tiny lizard the size of my finger! NOPE. The iguana's name was “Nala” and she took up a large part of our living room!

Nala, like all family pets, eventually died. During the last week of her life, it was winter and she wanted to be constantly wrapped in a thin blanket and held against my warm body. I had a full week of teaching violin lessons that week and it was right before the music festival, so I didn't know what to do. I didn't think having a sick, dying iguana at your lesson was professional and it might be upsetting or distracting. I sent out an email to all of my families explaining the situation and gave them the option to postpone the lesson to later, or come and we would whisper during our lesson while I rocked and held sweet Nala. Guess what? They all came and they all whispered and played their violins, focused and learned. It was one of their very best lesson weeks ever! I was blown away by my students’ compassion and understanding.

We had a wonderful funeral for her, with a homemade coffin made by my son and a special song written by our family. That BIG iguana was a surprise accident in our house, but she was loved.

Today in my Facebook live and for this blog, I have shared how I brought a violin on my first trip to Kenya to a Kipsigis village and what I did with it while I was there. It’s a cool story also involving an animal! Can you guess what animal it could be and why?

Send me a photo of your level one or two completed. When you do, we can share it right here. By sharing, you can encourage others with your hard work!

Remember, this is a do at your own pace activity. If you miss a day, you don’t start over. Instead, you try again the next day. Encourage your child or student to be excited about this activity. Nurture their enthusiasm by being excited with them. Use this as a learning opportunity to teach them more about Kenya and animals from Africa. But remember, most importantly - have fun. You can do this!

“An unlimited amount of ability can develop when parent and child are having fun together.” - Shinichi Suzuki

Click on the link for level one and get started on this project if you haven't yet. If you have finished level two and you are ready for level THREE alright then, here it is!

Next week look for adventure level FOUR, see you then!

I would love to see you with your completed level two and for you to share them with other families.

Check out my Free PDF download Checklist for a Successful Music Practice for teachers and practicing parents.

Your easy checklist for successful home music practices from Christy, the practicing pro. Whether you are a new or seasoned practice parent or music teacher, this checklist will help you organize before, during, and after practices for effective and fun practices.

INVITATION from Christy Hodder:

Speaking of amazing practices, let me tell you all about the digital course, the Practicing Pro Academy. This is for the serious practicing parents and music teachers and is an at-your-own-pace, step-by-step, online course to bring you more effective, positive, and fun home music practices. Registrants receive a special package in the mail from me, and I am with you in person with Q&As to answer all your questions.

Learn more about PPA and join the waitlist HERE for the next Practicing Pro Academy course. It's only offered once a year so you don't want to miss it. The registration will only open for a few weeks and I'll let everyone on the waitlist know immediately so that you can grab one of the spots.

LIKE, FOLLOW, and SHARE on Instagram and/or Facebook to be inspired and join the positive practicing music community.

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