Posted in 4th and 5th Grade, Christmas Activities, Classical Music, Fourth Grade, Rhythm, Singing, Winter Activities

Sleigh Ride and Cup Rhythms!

Fourth graders are learning about the composer Leroy Anderson, who composed light orchestra pieces such as “The Syncopated Clock” (which we learned about in 2nd grade) and “Sleigh Ride!”  Leroy Anderson grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and many of his songs are still played by The Boston Pops today.  We watched a video of John Williams conducting the Boston Pops playing “Sleigh Ride” and talked about all the instruments we saw and heard.  Then we sang the song!  Fourth graders will be singing “Sleigh Ride” at our school sing-along assembly in a few weeks, so it was good to start practicing now.  After singing the song, fourth graders learned a special rhythm, which we then translated to cups.  We began learning the rhythm on cups.  We will be playing this special rhythm ALONG with “Sleigh Ride” next week!  Here is the routine we will be doing:




Posted in 1st and 2nd Grade, Christmas Activities, Instrument Activities, Singing, Winter Activities

The Sounds of Santa’s Workshop

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Students in first and second grade are using lots of fun and cool instruments to mimic the sounds of tools used by elves in Santa’s workshop!  We are using wood blocks, hand drums, tambourines, jingle bells, cowbells, triangles, and guiros.  As I use a pointer to “press the buttons” on the paper, we practice counting 1, 2, 3, 4 with a steady beat, while clapping on the beat.  Then, I tell everyone to ONLY clap on a certain number, or numbers, as I “press the buttons” once again.  Then we transfer this skill to instruments, and from there I assign a different pattern to each instrument.  The result is very neat!  We play in the instrumental section of our song “The Sounds of Santa’s Workshop” from Music K8 Volume 24 no. 2.