You need to have several “tricks” to pull out of your back pocket when kids need to have a break, to expend some energy, to divert attention from something else going on in the room (a potential meltdown for ex.), to prepare them for a high-concentration activity, or when you the teacher need to have a mental break yourself.
And so, the Jumping Game was born!
Stand in a circle
Play a song with a good beat (see Spotify playlist below)
T stands on the outside of the circle and taps a child on the shoulder.
That child goes into the middle and begins to jump
Prepare kids for the jumping game by talking about how they can be creative by using feet together, feet apart, 1 and 2-foot jumping/hopping, use of arms, bending knees, turning as you jump, etc.
Everyone in the circle imitates the leader in the middle
T occasionally comments about some of the fine points of the jumper. “Ooh, did you see how they alternated bending their elbows as they jumped?”
Tap the next child in the circle after about 10 seconds, continuing to make your way around the circle.
In a class of 25, this gave the class about 4 minutes of jumping.
I used anything with a good beat that I knew would engage the kids. If we were near a seasonal event, I’d play something related.
Here’s my Spotify list of some possibilities or use the player below!
Pull out this versatile echo song for primary students that’s about appreciation, thanksgiving, and thankfulness in November or for other celebrations throughout the year. A simple Orff arrangement, one-chord C ukulele part, scarf activities, and movement will make this a great concert piece or SEL activity in the classroom.
Give Thanks is available as a single resource or part of this Thanksgiving Bundle!
Movement and dance are integral in a great music education experience for children by providing ways to express, explore, and learn. This page contains dances, games, activities, lesson plans, and philosopy.
Slideshow (St. P history, Rattlin’ Bog, Irish Washerwoman, Sing a Rainbow)
Rattlin’ Bog with history and bodhran
The Broom Dance
Follow the Rainbow info
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The Broom Dance
Set up three chairs and two lines of students (facing into center is best) are lined up from the two outer chairs. There are three students sitting in the chairs and the student in the middle has a shamrock (or valentine or snowflake or whatever)
When the music begins, everyone claps the steady beat and the child with the shamrock gives the shamrock to either the person on their right or left. The person who just received the shamrock moves to the middle seat and the two others dance down the lane and join the end of their respective lines.
The empty chairs are taken by the student next in line from each of the two rows.
Use any fun Irish song!
This is a great movement activity for K-2.
Follow the Rainbow
This song by Teresa Jennings is FABULOUS and for the price of the singles kit on Music K8 ($14.95 currently), it is worth it because you can use it any time of the year and you WILL use it every year!
Let’s talk about Bruno! Here’s a new MOVEMENT video for Bruno with the ending movement matching the contrapuntal lines of the ending. This is for parents, classroom teachers, music teachers, and anyone who
The Charm of Encanto
This original song inspired by the Spanish word, encanto, is accompanied by an Orff arrangement, Latin rhythm and melodic elements, and is a great extension to the movie craze that has swept the nation.
It’s a perfect concert selection or classroom exploration of Latin-flavored ostinati!
Colombia, Mi Encanto
Activity Packet from Disney
This packet from Disney is amazing and has information about the characters, Columbia, nature, and music along with printable activities.
Here are some ideas to explore the wonder of the great jazz virtuoso, Thelonious Monk. You’ll find biography info, a movement activity to his fabulous piece, “Stuffy Turkey,” some links, and advanced movement options!
I’ve outlined ideas for the A, B, and C sections for movement, drums, and parachutes. A great idea for exploration and creation is to let the students create the movement, drum part, or parachute moves.
Divide the class in thirds and put each in charge of one of the sections. Perform the piece with each group performing on their section(s).
You can teach the A and B section then let small groups come up with their ideas for the C section. Share each group’s idea. Perform the entire piece with the whole group performing the same A and B and then the C will sparkle with all of the unique ideas happening at once.
Extend the learning by going to Chrome Music Lab’s Song Maker and have students compose an A B A C A song.
If you use any of these ideas, please comment below and let me know!
Dave Brubeck was a jazz musician. He was born in California and died in 2012 at age 91. He loved experimenting with different time signatures such as 5/4, 6/4, and 9/8. He recorded Take 5 in 1959 and it became a jazz hit and a classic. Take 5 was written by Paul Desmond.
A Mashup of Take Five and Beethoven’s Fur Elise
Fun With Fives
Try a few of these ideas!
Count to five repeatedly and clap on the numbers FOUR and FIVE. Add the music.
Instead of clapping on the 4 and 5, what else could you do?
Get with a partner or small group, come up with a plan, and share with the class!
Can we move on all five numbers? Let’s try some opposites.
Hands up on 1-2-3 and down on 4-5
Bend over on 1-2-3 and straighten on 4-5
Smile on 1-2-3 and frown on 4-5
Right arm up on 1-2-3 (then down) and left arm up on 4-5 (then down)
Challenge move: Sway one direction on 1-2-3 and then the opposite on 4-5.
Parachute-whether you have a big parachute, mini parachutes, or scarves, create a move for the 1-2-3 and then another for the 4-5.
Parachute-up on 1-2-3 then while up, pull, shake, or beat of hands on 4-5. Repeat for down. So, “Up, two, three, pull, pull. Down, two, three, pull, pull.”
Create movement for the A section and then the B section to perform the entire first section Intro and ABA. (see notes below)
3+2=5 Add a 3-syllable animal to a 2-syllable animal-“mockingbird + robin”
Play the TWO syllable game. The teacher says “An-i-mal” and each student (or with a partner) in rhythm has to say a two syllable animal. The teacher can point to random students or go in order. If you play it as an out game, students who are out could then be in charge of clapping on 4 and 5 or playing an instrument on 4 and 5.
Could you play using “Yum-my fruit” or “Stu-dent names”?
Try the 3 + 2 activity with colors, food, plants, reptiles, etc.
Play on beats 4 and 5 trying out different drum techniques. (low, high, brush, knock, fist.
Put two together for the 1-2-3 + 4-5. Maybe brush for 1-2-3 and high for 4-5. Let students explore and then share with class.
Try playing just on the 1.
Try using the form ABA. The A section is the two styles on 1-2-3, 4-5 and the B section is just on the 1. Try it with the recording.
Sticks-exactly the same idea as drums but partners could tap each other’s sticks on the 4 and 5 of the A section or beat 1 of the B section.
Spotlight Artist: Al Jarreau
Al Jarreau was a singer. He was born in Wisconsin and came from a very musical family. He sang jazz, pop, soul, and R & B music and won many Grammy awards. He died in 2017.
Singing-Take 5 Cover with lyrics.
Les Nuages is a band from Romania.
If you are adventurous, here are some lyrics I created to show students some possibilities. Sing along 😀 and try writing some of your own.