Friday, December 15, 2017

Almost There- Holiday Activities for the Finish Line!

I had one concert last Friday and after another 4 rehearsals, had the last two concerts on Wednesday. Whew! 28 pieces of music later, I am tired.  We all know what that feels like, and how nice it is to hear from teachers and parents how much they enjoyed the concerts! 

Today is my last day of school before break. This will be me at 11:45 today!
 It is a half day ... and it is a crazy day we call "Gold and Maroon" which is where everyone is one of our school colors, either Gold or Maroon. Each grade is divided equally and students compete against each other in grade level teams for relay races and tug of war. But the fun and crazy screaming doesn't end there, then it is the parents turn to compete - Gold Dads compete against Maroon Dads and the same for Moms.  It. Is. CRAZY!  Fun, but crazy, and loud, and yes, we are in the gym!

I know many teachers are still going strong, some of you have 3 days left, some have a full week next week.
Here are a few things I have done the past couple of weeks that do not require you to print, cut, or laminate anything.  I am not a fan of worksheets or coloring pages - I don't use them. 
I do not know the animator who puts together these Musication videos, but I am so very grateful for these wonderful, highly entertaining and active play alongs!  Great to leave as sub plans, too!!
All you need are some instruments and a projector to show these. Guaranteed fun and the best part is the children are actively making music and having a fun experience that is not at all boring - no heads on the floor and eyes closing while watching these!

1.  Trepak Percussion Play Along

This is perfect for first through upper elementary!  I have students watch the first minute or so, then ask them to turn and talk to a neighbor about what they saw and noticed.  Then I go back to the directions page, which shows what the symbols are, what instruments are needed, who the conductors are, etc.  I ask students what they notice, turn and talk, how many symbols, and then ask the older students (2nd grade and up) to problem solve; how many students do we have today, how many instruments. I try to let them help figure out how many groups of students we need and usually let them self-select groups.  My students know where our instruments are and they go by group to choose the instruments to play.  There is a "cymbal" part in this but I don't have enough cymbals so I let them use the gong!  I give enough mallets for all to play the very large gong and they love it. It is not an instrument we use often, and this way everyone gets to play this very special instrument! Then... PLAY!  It is so fun and they really love it.  I usually let mine rotate through the instruments; the last group puts the instruments on the floor and steps back, then I tell them "drums go to triangles, triangles to sticks, sticks to tambourines, tambourines to gong (cymbal)".  We play again and again until everyone has had a turn!  SO fun.. you could also use body percussion; stomp, pat, snap, clap, lip pop!
There are two of these - one with instrument symbols - great for younger students, and one with other symbols - also good for instruments, and also good for body percussion!

2. Trepak Boomwhacker Play Along Easy

You will need a Bb for this one which uses low E and low F / G, A, Bb, B, C, D, E, F
(B + E for one child)

3. Twinkle Twinkle Handbells (or glockenspiels or Orff instrument) Play Along:

4.  We Wish You a Merry Christmas Boomwhacker Play Along

5.  We Wish You a Merry Christmas Boomwhacker DUO Play Along


6.  Jingle Bells Play Along with notes on a partial staff

7.  Frosty, the Snowman Boomwhacker Play Along

Hope you enjoy these and check out musication on youtube here.  They have a nice variety - everything from Sylvia Pizzicato, Frere Jacques, Black House Blues,  Happy Birthday, Nima Naja, In the Hall of the Mountain King, to Rolling in the Deep! There are about 50 videos now and just added several this fall.
Happy holidays, everyone! Good luck with concerts, Happy New Year!


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