Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Yes, I know it's May and I am just starting this blog, but I thought I'd start sharing this year and continue on into next year. I teach preK-5 General Music in Virginia. Our mascot is the All Star (we call him HB Twinkle), hence All Star Music. :)

This past week my All Star Kindergarteners listened to 16 different genres of music in my Jukebox activity. This is the second year in a row I have done this lesson, and it was very effective- and fun!

I purchased a book called Jukebox. (You can buy it here: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/jukebox-david-merveille/1008762043?cm_mmc=googlepla-_-book_5to14-_-q000000633-_-9781933605722&cm_mmca2=pla&ean=9781933605722&isbn=9781933605722&r=1) It is composed almost completely of pictures with a few words on each page. We go through the book at the beginning of the class period to identify what genres of music we will be listening to. They include: Disco, Opera (which is actually represented twice in this book), Choral, Country, Hip Hop, Blues, Jazz, and many more.

Before the class, I have composed a playlist with one selection from each of these genres. The past two years I have used two completely different playlists- which is great because it's fun for me to find new selections. The students receive a sheet of paper with 8 boxes on each side- one box for each musical selection. I ask them to choose 5 crayons for the activity and find their own personal space. I explain that they will draw a picture in each box that depicts how the music makes them feel. The picture could just be a face, it could include aspects of the music that they hear, or even a word that describes how they feel. It's really cool to see the different ways students choose to express themselves.

I go through the book page by page for a second time- this time playing part of the song I have chosen for each specific genre. Before the music is played, I point out the correct box on the paper where the students are drawing. I play about a minute of each selection and allow students to draw/write in the specified box.

After we have listened to all 16 selections and students have finished drawing, I have some students share their favorite music and how it made them feel. Here are a couple examples of student work from this activity:

This student chose to draw pictures of herself and how she felt during the music.

This student chose to draw faces and include words for how he felt. Opera- funny, Hip Hop- cool, Boom! (drums)- groovy, Madame Butterfly- calm

I found that this was a great way to introduce critical listening skills into a Kindergarten music classroom. I also really enjoy seeing my special education students get into it, as I am able to guide them through it while other students in the classroom are working more independently.

1 comment:

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