Friday, February 26, 2021

Trombone Shorty Hurricane STICKS

 One of my absolute favorites when I want to jam is listening and playing around with the music of New Orleans musician Troy Andrews, AKA "Trombone Shorty".  There are a couple of great children's books featuring his music and his story - check them out!

Today I have a rhythm stick arrangement I have been working on for the past couple of weeks to Hurricane Season - the music is here:

You can always decide to change up a section - the B Section will be challenging with the rhythm but if you say "Hurricane" to the rhythm as written it will help solidify it. The "Turn R" fits right in with the "Hey" spoken in the song. 

Want the pdf? - click the image.  This is from my Singing Waters, Dancing Flames book available in print or as an ebook from major music suppliers or direct from the publisher at


Friday, February 5, 2021

Ella Fitzgerald

 This year at our school, in addition to dismantling some long-held traditions that were problematic, and engaging in a 21-week Racial Equity Challenge- which has been amazing, we are celebrating Black History Month in a way we have never done before. I am so incredibly proud of my school for embracing change and valuing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice work year round. If you celebrate Black History Month, I hope we all realize the importance of celebrating Black, Brown, Indigenous, and Asian People of Color (BBIAPOC) music and musicians throughout the year, not only during the nationally designated, recognized, and celebrated months. 

This year we are also having a door decoration contest, with each teacher celebrating one African American/Black person of influence and importance. Teachers are relating this to content within the classroom and students will have a socially-distanced gallery crawl as well as a time to hear about each person by the students via video announcements in classrooms. It is exciting, but we also need to work on our curricula, traditions, histories, and centering voices of BBIAPOC within our classrooms. 

Here is my door our students decorated:

I chose Ella Fitzgerald, and students will be listening to and learning about this barrier-breaker and glass-ceiling-shatterer throughout the month as well as learning about Stevie Wonder, John Legend, Duke Ellington,  Louis Armstrong, and Esperanza Spalding - here is one of my favorite videos of her! 

For the full slide set of the preview below, click here. 


Monday, February 1, 2021

My Heart is Like a Zoo

 My friend Ardith is a lovely music educator with a passion for children and music education.  Many thanks to her for giving me permission to share this oh-so-lovely lesson today!  Perfect for Valentines Day! 

Read the book and insert the pages after every three animals. This is SO adorable! 

The full google slide is here.