Sunday, September 7, 2014

Using Music in the Classroom

I love to sing.  I'm not  particularly good at it.  I just love to do it.  We sing a lot in my room. Here are a few ideas and a freebie!

Quiet down a line by singing a song. My rule is sing or be silent! This was an accidentally-discovered trick. One day I FELT like yelling, but started to sing instead. It changed my mood and it worked MUCH better than crabbiness.  When we finish a song, I immediately put my finger to my lips for quiet.  It works almost every time.

Play soothing instrumental music when the kids are writing or doing silent, independent seatwork.  I play the same CD every single time, and it's almost like the music prompts my students to write steadily.

Discover Spotify.  Spotify is a music site that allows you to form playlists. There is a fee if you don't want ads.  If you are planning to use Spotify in the classroom, you do NOT want ads! Trust me on this one.  Once at home, I had to rush to turn down the volume because an ad came on that I did NOT want my children to hear!  That's never happened in the classroom, because I pay the small fee for a subscription.   It's WELL worth it.  

Have a musical "freeze walk".  Not a clever name, I know, but here's how it works. Play a song as students walk around the room. When the music stops, they freeze.  When the music starts, they walk again.  Sometimes, the kids just need a movement break. This always is a fun way to get our bodies moving.  My favorite song for this activity is the theme from The Golden Girls!

Practice reading skills and build fluency using songs.  Have students circle rhyming words, find word patterns, underline sight words or contractions, etc. Then, play the song as students follow and sing along. Click on the image below to grab a freebie with some of my favorite songs to use in class.

Melissa at Dilly Dabbles has more ideas for using Spotify in the classroom,

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