Even though we started up with music classes a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been (finally) giving more thought to the resources, games and structure I want for our ‘class’ (by that I mean me, hubby and the kids). Each ‘class’ (sorry for that word, can’t think of an alternative!!) session lasts about 45 minutes. We usually have music class for about 12-14 weeks or so. I thought I would share in a bit more detail how I structure “music class” for our 6 and 4 year olds (it’s geared a bit more for LD). In this class we sing lots of songs, listen to, play along with and dance to music pieces. We play lots of movement music games (think duck-duck-goose to music). We do circle dances (like an easy version of square dancing). We introduce musical concepts (notes, rhythms, etc.) and introduce a new instrument (last semester it was the glockenspiel, this semester we’re learning a bit on the dulcimer). Most importantly, we have fun with music. If they’re ‘out of it’ I either move on or cut things short.
In this post I thought I’d share the general structure of the class. I usually do about 8 to 10 different activities.
1) Sing Hello
2) Sing three children’s songs together (this week it’ll be Go Tell Aunt Rhody, The Littlest Worm, London Bridge with actions)
3) Music Game
4) Rhythm or Notes Activity
5) Music Game
6) Listening Activity
7) Dance/Play A-long
8) Instrument Work
9) Circle Song/Dance
10) Closing Songs (this week these’ll include This Land Is Your Land and one other)
This is roughly what we do. Our little music ‘class’ is about 45minutes long. Sometimes I need to cut things out; sometimes we go longer.
I think what I’ll do is share some of the card activities and various printed resources first. Those actually are what we use least in the ‘class’ but take the most time to prepare. In all, we probably only spend about ten minutes or so using them (see #4 above). The rest of the time is circle songs, music games (as in chase games; action song-games), dancing, listening to music and more.
By the way, LD is also learning the piano so this ‘class’ is geared more towards singing, dancing, and things like that. For piano, he’s been doing well with Teaching Little Fingers to Play.
PPS — I’ll try to list some of the active music games my kids really enjoy, but not tonight!! You can check back later and click on the link Elem-Children’s Music 1 on the sidebar. I hope to get together a list to share with you sometime soon. If you have some active music-related game ideas, please leave a comment below and I’ll try to include that on my list! Just a couple of examples of what I mean: London Bridge is Falling Down (sing the song, two people link arms, the others go under the bridge and someone get’s trapped when the bridge falls down). Or, Here Comes a Bluebird (kids weave in and out of the others, grabbing someone’s hand and jumping together with their partner at the end of the song).