Singing The Dots is both a course in sightsinging, and a collection of songs for choirs.

Please help yourself to the PDFs. Thanks to the generous support of the Australian Kodály Scholarship, these books are available for free. They are free cost-wise and the copyright licence means the songs and resources are free for you to download, copy electronically or on paper, share, perform and record.  

Many singers would like to be able to read music but it can be hard to find time, enthusiasm and suitable material to work on sightsinging. I created Singing The Dots, so choirs can develop musicianship skills together through singing songs.

There are sixteen songs for choirs, each containing a sightreadable melody, and harmony parts. The songs are composed for adults. The ranges are comfortable and I chose text of beautiful, well known poetry. The songs slowly introduce musical elements and tools for sightreading, with simple explanations and short, lighthearted exercises to introduce and prepare each song.

Singing The Dots is based on the highly successful Kodály approach, adapted to the needs of adult choristers.

You can use this material in two ways - you can either download the chorister and director books above which include exercises and explanations to help you scaffold your teaching, or you can download individual PDFs of the songs, listed below. This might suit you if you have your own approach to teaching sightreading or if you would like to use the songs simply as easy repertoire for your choir to sing.

The Songs

Beat Songs

These three songs introduce how the beat is written in music. All of the notes need to be taught by rote in these songs.

Blood Red Roses

Sea Shanty - D minor - 4/4 - SATB
New musical elements - quarter note
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Row Row Row

Gospel - D minor - 4/4 - SATB
Download PDF

Blow The Wind

  1. English Folk Song - F major - 6/8 - SATB
    New musical elements - compound meter
    Download PDF


Do - Re -Mi Songs

These songs feature sightreadable do, re, mi melodies first presented in all voices and harmonized with straightforward parts.

Stopping By Woods

E major - 3/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 16 in all voices, continuing in soprano throughout
New musical elements - half note, eighth note, anacrusis
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Unquiet Grave

F major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 11 and 61 to 71 in all voices
New musical elements - full note, dotted half note, rests
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BREAK BREAK BREAK

F major - 6/8 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 10 and 30 to 40 in all voices
New musical elements - eighth note rest
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So Songs

These songs add so to the sightreadable melodies.

Can Ye Sew

Scottish Folk Song - F major - 3/4 - 2 voice
Sightreading component - full piece
Download treble clef PDF Download bass clef PDF

Irish Blessing

F major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 8 to 22, continuing in soprano throughout
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FInd My Way

E major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 4 to 11 for SA, 31 to 39 for TB, soprano throughout
New musical elements - sixteenth notes
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Tiger tiger

E major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 13 to 20, soprano and tenor throughout
New musical elements - spoken word, eight and sixteen note patterns
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psalm 23

G major - 3/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 16, soprano continuing throughout
New musical elements - dotted quarter note eighth note pattern
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DEEp in the night

F major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 8 tenor and soprano, 9 to 12 tenors in F major, 17 to 20 sopranos, 25 to 32 basses in Eb major, 33 to 36 altos in Bb major
New musical elements - eighth and sixteenth note patterns, modulation, extended chords
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Pentatonic Songs

These songs feature sightreadable melodies with do, re, mi, so and la within the range of a sixth.

I heard a bird sing

C major - 6/8 - 3 voice
Sightreading component - full piece
New musical elements - sixteenth notes in compound meter
Download treble clef PDF Download bass clef PDF

ludlow tower

D major - 4/4 and 3/4 - SATB (and optional solo)
Sightreading component - full piece (except solo)
New musical elements - change in meter
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Fare thee well

F major - 2/4 - 3 voice
Sightreading component - full piece
New musical elements - dotted eighth notes
Download treble clef PDF Download bass clef PDF

Dunno why

F major - 2/4 - 3 voice
Sightreading component - full piece
Download treble clef PDF Download bass clef PDF

The world is round

F major - 4/4 - SATB
Sightreading component - measures 1 to 20 basses and tenors, 20 to 40 sopranos, 40 to 50 in C major sopranos altos and basses, 52 to 66 sopranos in F major
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Thank you to Bethany Hill, Hew Wagner and Emlyn O’Regan for recording the songs.