If I Had Wings (a zipper song)
©1990 Steve Schuch / Night Heron Music (ASCAP)

Icarus and Daedalus
Long before airplanes and space ships, people dreamed of being able to fly like a bird. This song works well with Steve’s “Up in the Aerie” activity in which children build a large group nest. It is also a fine accompaniment to any stories involving birds or flight, such as Icarus and Daedalus.

Why do different animals fly differently? What do you think “home” means to them?

Song tracks: Trees of Life | Turn the World Around | The Forest is a Wonderful Place | If I Had Wings | Sap Time | Barges | Silent Huntress | Ibis the Whale | Two Different Worlds | The Animal Song | The Garden Round | Where Will We Go | The Little Prince | Zeno-ba-ba-da | Giving Tree | Activity Guide Home




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If I had wings, if I had wings
I’d fly away over the sea
If I had wings, if I had wings
I’d fly away to my home

(Eagle) has wings, (eagle) has wings
To fly away over the (mountain)
(Eagle) has wings, (eagle) has wings
To fly away to (her) home

(Owl) has wings, (owl) has wings
To fly away over the (trees)
(Owl) has wings, (owl) has wings
To fly away to (his) home

Instrumental Interlude

So give us these wings, give us these wings *
To fly away over the sea
Give us these wings, give us these wings
To fly away to our homes

To fly away, to fly away
To fly away... to our homes

*Alternate last verse: We all have wings, we all have wings, etc.
Other popular verses: Bat; Humming Bird; Butterfly...

Suggested Activity

About Zipper Songs
“Zipper songs” are ones where you make new verses by zipping a few of the old words out (in this song the name of the animal and where you’d like it to fly) and zipping a few new ones into their place. Other popular verses include Bat, Hummingbird, and Butterfly. Let the children decide where each of these flies... over the fields, over the barn, flowers, moon, etc.

If you were a humming bird, hovering over a flower to drink its nectar, would you fly the same way an eagle does? Would your beaks be the same? How about a bat or an owl when they are hunting or roosting? Over time different creatures have evolved different kinds of wings and ways of flying. These are called “adaptations.” Make models or drawings of some of your favorite flying critters. Show any special adaptations in their wings, ears, mouths, feet and feathers. What is it about the animal’s habitat or food that makes these adaptations useful?

Those Flying Machines
Many of the first attempts at human flight were based on watching how different birds flew. Even today, scientists study air currents and wing patterns of birds and insects to see what we can learn about building better airplanes.

For this activity, do a report on one flying animal (such as bees) and some early airplane inventors (like the Wright brothers). What things made their airplanes work? What things proved to be a real disaster? Then build a few paper airplanes putting theory to the test. Compare the results when you try flying your best airplane design with your worst. What do you think explains the difference in how far they fly, or how long they stay aloft?

See additional notes about owl feathers under “Silent Huntress.” Also see notes for “Where Will We Go” and Tree Adaptations under “Trees of Life.


Night Heron Music • 72 Meeting Hill Road, Hillsborough, NH 03244 • USA
• ph (603) 464-4321 •
e-mail info@nightheron.com

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