Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wishlist Wednesday Linky Party and HUGE TPT Sale

I'm joining up with Amy Abbott today, along with my other music teacher blogger friends to share exciting news with you!!!  Starting TOMORROW, Teachers Pay Teachers will be celebrating 3 million strong by offering up to 28% off.
My entire store will be 20% off, and using the code above, TPT3, you'll get an additional percentage off from TPT. Tomorrow and Friday are your days to stock up!

For this linky party, we can blog about some items from our own stores, one music item on our wishlist, and another item on our wishlist. Here's a few things I'm excited about!

I've just finished two children's literature cross-curricular sets that I'm psyched about and have been hearing great feedback from.

The first one is a set to go along with the folk story, "The Mitten." 

Songs are created using sol, mi, and la (and a do to finish the melody).  Each time a new character/animal enters the mitten, their song is added to the list, making this an add on song.  There are slides with just the text to the songs, with solfege in a pictoral way, and with the actual dictated melody.  Recordings of the songs are also included for non-music teachers to take a try at this, if they dare to do so:-)  Suggestions for Orff incorporation also come along with the set.

The second cross-curricular children's lit set I just finished goes along with The Hungry Caterpillar.  This rhythmic ostinato set adds a measure long speech and rhythm ostinato for each day of the week's dining selection.  Suggestions for final performance and an ensemble are included as well.  Quarter and Eighth note rhythms are used.

A music item in my cart right now that I'll be hopefully snagging up during the big sale is Sara Bibee's George and Ira Gershwin composer of the month pack.  I'm trying to purchase a composer for each month for next year and I love how visually pleasing and academically packed her composer bulletin board sets are. 

The clip art in my cart is so immense, that I may need to take out a loan :-)  One thing I plan on purchasing during this sale is this set of lightening bugs.  They are screaming to be made into a bulletin board set for you all!  Creative Clips has some great stuff to share (including the sale promo banner above!  Thanks!)
Comment below and let me know what you are excited to purchase!  I'd love to hear what this sale is going to bring to your classroom!

Children's Literature Sets

Those of you who follow my blog know that I looooove using children's literature in my classroom.  I end every first grade class with a song tale picture book.  However, I also love using children's literature as a springboard for improvisation, for rhythm activities, for melodic song incorporation, and for instrument playing.

I've just finished up two sets to share with you, to help you implement children's literature in your music classroom too.  (Note: Awesome classroom teachers who love to add music into their language arts lessons could also do this.  Gotta love music spreading outside of the music room and filling the school!)

The first set I finished goes with Eric Carle's Hungry Caterpillar book.

This set has four beat rhythm patterns to be chanted for each day's caterpillar dining.  Quarter and eighth notes are practiced, and an ostinato ensemble can even be performed.  Directions are included for making this rhythm activity a cross-curricular success.

The second set that is hot off the press goes with the book, "The Mitten."  In this set, I wrote a two measure sol mi la (and a few do's) melody for each character in the circular story.  Each page in the book has a melody to tag on to the prior melodies, making a longer and longer song.  Ideas for incorporating Orff instruments are also included.  Recordings of the song come along with the set, so classroom teachers who would like to use music in their language arts lessons can use the recordings to perform the songs with the book.  Three versions of slides are including, showing the text with a pictoral version of the solfege for the melodies, a version including just the text for each mini song, and a version including the notation for each mini song.  A copy of the sheet music is thrown in there too.  What more could you want or need? 

I can't wait to use these sets with my kids.  Hope they bring joy to your classroom as you share a love of music alongside a love of reading!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

2 Chord Ukulele Song Freebie: Buffalo Gals

Just finished up a set for my 6th grade ukulele players and thought I'd share it with you all for free. 

My kids needed a bit more work on C and G, before we add the F chord into the mix.  I decided to introduce Buffalo Gals for it's ease of learning, simple chord changes, and it's timelessness.

I introduced the short melody today and next class the kids will sing and play with the chord changes. 

This free download includes a picture chart of the C and G chords and then has slides that include the lyrics to the song, with a pictoral version of the chord above each word when a change is required.

Hope this helps your kids improve their chord changing chops.

Fun With Two Chords for Ukulele

We've entered the realm of two chords in our ukulele playing in my classroom, after a brief hiatus due to this that and the other thing. 

One fun song we just finished up using C and G is "There Ain't No Bugs on Me."

Here are some verse examples, but due to the nature of funny folk songs, there are eight million versions out there.  The chord pattern for all of the verses is the same, so I'll just share the chords for the first verse.

Oh, there ain't no bugs on me, on me.
There ain't no bugs on me

There may be bugs on some of you mugs
But there ain't no bugs on me.

Oh there ain't no flies on me, on me.
There ain't no flies on me.
There may be flies on some of you guys
But there ain't no flies on me.

Well, the Juney bug comes in the month of June
The lightning bug comes in May
Bed bug comes just any old time
But, they're not going to stay

Well, a bull frog sittin' on a lily pad
Looking up at the sky
The lily pad broke and the frog fell in
He got water all in his eye.

There ain't no frogs on us.
There ain't no frogs on us.
There might be frogs on some of you dogs,
But there ain't no frogs on us.

Mosquito he fly high
Mosquito he fly low
If old mosquito lands on me
He ain't a gonna fly no mo'

A peanut sittin' on a railroad track
His heart was all a flutter
Along come a choo-choo on the track
Toot! Toot! Peanut butter!

A cow walked on the railroad track,
the train was coming fast.
The train got off the railroad track
to let the cow go past!

After we worked with the different famous version (the peanut version is alllllwwwaaays my kids favorite), we then broke into small groups to write our own verses.  I remind the kids of the required rhyming pattern and that the text must fit into the same space as the verses that we already know.  Then, we perform and share out. 

Every year, I end up with some really fun things from the kids.  They love the opportunity to create while practicing known skills. 

Composing, Singing, and Performing on Instruments All in One Lesson = Standards Whammy!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

New Freebie: March Vocal Exploration

I've been whipping out great stuff left and right, but realized I haven't shared any great freebies with you all in awhile, so I've just finished a vocal exploration set (March Themed) that I hope you'll enjoy and find purpose for.

This set of 7 pictures is a great vocal exploration activity or vocal warm up for your students in the month of March, or leading up to it. Have your students follow the pictoral pathways with their voices to find their head voice and practice exploring their vocal range.

The set includes 7 pictures with pathways and 7 pictures without the pathways drawn for students to create their own pathways on an interactive or Smart Board or on paper. I have had my students make class "books" of these to take home and teach their parents at home, reinforcing classroom learning.  My part time learning support classes love to perform each others and have a tangible piece to take home and share.

Download it today for your tool box of resources.  Let me know how it works for you!  Leave feedback and follow me on TPT while you're at it!

Thanks to Messare Clips and Designs for the great March clip art
and to Z is Zebra for the paper.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Another New Song Tale I Love

John Feirabend was one of the first people to introduce me to the concept of Song Tales (picture books or songs that tell a story with music).  During his first steps in music training, I learned of his suggestion to end every class with a song tale.  Since taking this class with him, I have done this with all my first grade classes with great success.

John has his own line of picture book Song Tales that I adore.  I've highlighted some of them on my blog before.  What is so neat about them is that he offers an annual contest to illustration/art students at Hartt where he teaches.  The winner is published.  When you are purchasing his books, you are helping a new illustrator get their start.

I own EVERY book in this collection.  I am very excited about the newest edition, "There's a Hole in my Bucket."  The pictures are beautiful and so very elementary appropriate.  If you don't already own the Feirabend recordings, you can also download a quality recording of the book online for FREE. 

Hope you find this gem to be of great use in your classroom as I do! 

Octapus's Garden Picture Book Find

Those who know me know that I LOOOOVE kids books, especially ones that are rhythmic and have implications for the music classroom, but most especially ones that coordinate with songs, be it folk, classical, or pop.

I just discovered a book I had never seen before, and I'm in love.  I end every single first grade class all year with a song tale picture book, to have them listening and to make sure they settle down before they leave the music room.  This one is my newest purchase and I can't wait to share it with the kids.  I know they will love it and ask to hear it again. 

Octapus's Garden (ISBN 9781471120077) is based off of the popular Beatles' tune.  I found it on Ebay and Amazon as well as several other smaller book distributor's websites. 

No matter what your stance is on popular music, I think it is important to teach our students to listen to music from multiple genres and to critique and evaluate all types of music.  They are the future music consumers of the world.  They need to learn to choose wisely.

Happy singing!

Rain on the Green Grass Poem + Boomwhackers = Surprisingly Effective

I have to admit that I've never been a huge fan of boomwhackers.  I always felt like, with a full room of Orff instruments, why would I use something that doesn't make as musical of a sound. 

However, this school year, I have been converted a bit in the boomwhacker department.  I teach two part time learning support classes who are only pushed out for their specials (music, pe, art, library).  Getting vocal sound out of the small group is very challenging and activities requiring fine motor skills, such as xylophone playing, can be quiet difficult.  We push through those activities anyway, don't get me wrong, but it is not easy. 

It hit me that I had a stash of boomwhackers in the closet from the teacher who taught before me.  I realized, in an epiphany, how perfect these simple colored tubes were for working with this class.  Each of us has a color, we follow along, and we make music.  I wish I was permitted to upload video of them, because the end products have been pretty neat and touching. 

So, when followers on my Treble in the Classroom facebook page  (follow if you don't already...I often give away flash freebies!!) asked for boomwhacker resources, how could I say no?  I now know there are ways to use them in meaningful ways. 

So, on my snow day yesterday, I created my first boomwhacker set, using the poem Rain on the Green Grass.  Some of you may know the sol mi la version of this song.  This is not it.  It merely uses the familiar poem text to set to boomwhacker melodies. 

This set has the poem "Rain on the Green Grass" notated rhythmically and melodically. It is the traditional text with slight adaptation and a melody I composed. Quarter, Eighth Notes, Half Notes, and one Whole Note are used. This set includes slides with lyrics to the "Rain on the Green Grass" poem, Colored Rhythm slides, Colored Melodic Notation Slides, Colored Accompaniment Slides, and Colored Ensemble Slides. A melody and accompaniment are included. Accompaniment could be played with boomwhackers as well, or on Orff Instruments.

A "Fill in the Missing Rhythms" worksheet from the melodic rhythm is included as well.

Music is OUT of this WORLD

As I sat inside on another snow day yesterday, my creative juices were flowing.  I decided to make a new bulletin board set that I could either use year round, or put up when my 2nd graders are studying space.  It is thus entitled, "Music is out of This World." 

This set is a great way to remind students of the National Standards for Music Education in a fun way. The standards have been simplified a bit so that they are easier for younger kids to understand. 

The set includes the lettering as a sign or as individual letters (Music is Out of This World) and 9 space shapes listing the national standards for music education.

Directions and a sample set up are included as well. Easy to arrange in many ways that work for the board or walls pace you are choosing to fill. Print it, cut, and go for a great educational bulletin board. Each planet takes a piece of 8.5 x 11 paper.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Mi Re Do and Half Note Combination Activity Sets

I've been working on mi re and do with my second graders melodically and half notes, rhythmically.  I decided to pull together some new sets for my second graders, and was inspired by some of the songs my 3rd grade recorder players are working on.

The first set I completed goes along with the song Down by the Station.  There is so much instruction available in this very little tune.

Included in this kit are:
1. Down by the Station Solfege Set: These slides will allow students to see Down by the Station notated pictorally, on a 5 line staff, and in G major.

2. Down by the Station Rhythm Identification Set: These slides will allow students to see the rhythm of the song written in pictures, with pictures and rhythms, and with text and rhythm notation.

3. Down by the Station Rhythm Dictation Worksheets: 2 worksheets allow students to dictate the rhythm of the song in 2 slightly different ways.

4. B Section Composition Word Chain Cards: These cards allow students to learn about Rondo form, while accomplishing the difficult standard of composing and arranging. Students will use the provided word chain cards to compose their own B section in groups. Directions for creating a whole piece performance as a class are provided.

After creating this set, I thought Merrily We Roll Along could be used in very similar ways, so I made the same type of set with a different song and theme.

Included in this set are 4 files:
1. Merrily We Roll Along Solfege Set: These slides will allow students to see Merrily We Roll Along notated pictorally, on a 5 line staff, and in G major.

2. Merrily We Roll Along Rhythm Identification Set: These slides will allow students to see the rhythm of the song written in pictures, with pictures and rhythms, and with text and rhythm notation.

3. Merrily We Roll Along Rhythm Dictation Worksheets: 2 worksheets allow students to dictate the rhythm of the song in 2 slightly different ways.

4. B Section Composition Word Chain Cards: These cards allow students to learn about Rondo form, while accomplishing the difficult standard of composing and arranging. Students will use the provided word chain cards to compose their own B section in groups. Directions for creating a whole piece performance as a class are provided.


Slides and Ladders

Last evening, in anticipation of ANOTHER snow day today, I was thinking about a rhythm game to create.  I remembered a game that I loved playing as a kid, and have recently played with my nephew, and was inspired to create this next set for my students, and yours!

Slides and Ladders is a familiar game to kids.  Included in the set are a game board (for 2-4 kids), directions, and printable game pieces.  You will need to provide dice.

Students will roll a dice and then move their marker that many spaces. They must read the rhythm pattern that is on the square they land on. If they do not perform it correctly, as determined by their group members, they must move back to where they were before rolling. If they land on a ladder and perform correctly, they will climb up to the higher square. If they land on a slide, they will slide back down to the square it directs to. The first one to the end is the winner of the game!
Note: Rhythms Look Difficult to Read Here, but That is Due to Shrinking the Size of Photo for Uploading.  Display is clear for your downloading and printing!

This is to be performed in small groups for 2-4 students. Great for station work or whole class small group work. Also great for a music substitute if students are familiar with the rhythm patterns.

I know that before playing this in my room, the students will need to be reminded to cooperate and accept the criticism of their teammates who may let them know they performed incorrectly.  I will serve as the ultimate "referee" but hope the kids can solve most of the difficulties on their own.

There are six versions of this game, and a bundled set of them all.
1.  Quarter and Eighth Edition
2.  Half Note and Rest Edition
3.  Sixteenth Note Edition
4.  Syncopated Edition
5. Ti Tika Edition
6.  Tika Ti Edition
7.  Bundled Combo (Save $5)

Five Favorite Pins of February

As I sit here in my fuzzy, warm pants on yet ANOTHER snow day, I am linking up with Mrs. Miracle's Music Room to share my five favorite pins from the month of February.  With all of these days off of school, there's been plenty of time for pinning.

1.  This adorable bulletin board idea came from a blog I hadn't seen before, "A Nichol's Worth."  I know my kids would love this printable "Mi"nion set.  Might have to work on this over the summer for next year!
2.  This pin introduced me to a picture book of a beloved song that I didn't know existed.  I love using all kinds of repertoire to end class with, through listening and following along in a book, for my primary students.  I will certainly be ordering this book to add to my vast collection of song tales.  I should've been a children's librarian :-)
3.  I discovered another picture book that I didn't know existed with this pin.  I may go broke buying books this month, but knowing my kids will love them makes it all worthwhile!
4.  Peter Pan Jr. is our after school spring musical this year.  It has been so fun to pull together (on the days when we've actually had school and been able to rehearse).  I loved this poster image I saw on pinterest.  So true in life too, not just in Peter Pan!

5.  This bulletin board set is one I recently created.  I just love it and was so happy with how it turned out.  I have it cut out and laminated and ready to go up soon when it's time to change boards.  My kids always remember visuals that are placed around the room, so I hope this helps them with dynamics.
Happy Pin