Notes and Rhythm Games
April 16, 2014 at 10:20 am #36579
I am teaching a Band Bootcamp this summer without instruments, so basically a General Music class. I am looking for your favorite games for 4th and 5th graders to help them practice basic theory concepts, note names and rhythms. Any help you can give would be appreciated.May 11, 2014 at 7:18 pm #36931
My favorite game ever – Rhythm (whatever skill you’re working on) Baseball!!
Separate the kids into two teams. Consider letting them chose / vote on a name for their team.
Draw a baseball diamond on the board / poster paper and a scoreboard with each team’s name. Sometimes I just call the teams note names – eighth notes and quarter notes for ex. One student at a time is “at bat.” For at least the first couple innings, you are the pitcher. The student at bat gets three times to clap the pattern correctly. After each incorrect performance, the “ref” can call “strike 1/2/3-you’re out!” If the student strikes out, the pattern goes to the other team (outfield). IF they play it correctly, they get on base – one base at a time for the first inning.
Then you can make it more interesting. I do two measures for a double and three measures for a triple, four for a home run. It’s totally up to you how you want to change it to practice the skills you want to focus on!
Kids get into it very quickly. You can make one kid a ref, one a score keeper. Make sure that the person “at bat” changes so that everyone gets a chance, obviously.
To practice note names, I’d give each note a different value – say eighth notes are a double, quarter notes a single, sixteenth notes a home run, triplets a triple, dotted half note a triple – you get the idea.. Once the kid identifies the note and it’s length s/he could get on base.
Another game (I forget the name): Print two paper dice off Google Images and draw a different note on each side of one, rests on the other one. Draw a bee on one square of each dice. Separate kids into two teams. One person rolls the dice two times and (another student?) has to write down the notes and rests which came up. Then the student has to clap the pattern [and identify the notes]. Once the person claps the rhythm correctly their team gets a point. For an extra point the entire team has to clap it correctly. If they get two bees they are “stung” and loose their turn. I did this with my 4th and 5th graders last year for the same purpose and it was effective.May 12, 2014 at 9:34 am #36933
I love those games! Thank you so much for the help. I know that my kids would love each of those games. What grades do you play “baseball” with?May 12, 2014 at 2:15 pm #36950
One game my students have really enjoyed for practicing the letters of the treble clef is Memory:
1. Buy/create cards that have the various notes on the treble clef and then also cards that have just the letter names (so one card will have A on the treble clef and another card will just be the letter A, etc).
2. Place all cards face down. Working individually or in teams, the students take turns flipping two cards over at a time.
3. If the two cards go together (the letter E and E on the staff) the student/team keeps the two, if not, they turn them back over.
Hope this helps!
Ashley PorterMay 12, 2014 at 7:32 pm #36952
@baileyj037, I play any sort of “baseball” with grade 4 and higher. Grade 3 could probably handle it too. 2nd grade and younger usually needs something with more movement involved. They have trouble sitting still, just the age.May 13, 2014 at 9:55 am #36956
Thank you everyone for the great activities! With all of your help I should find something that will spark their interest and help them remember.May 13, 2014 at 6:33 pm #37010
Another fun one is a version of Twister – it works best with a smaller group though, so it depends how many kids you have!
I happen to have a big colorful music rug in my classroom with a giant treble staff on it, but I’ve done this before by using masking tape to create a giant music staff. Students are split into two teams, and each team sends one student at a time (two students compete at once, in other words). Shout out things like “right hand on low E” and “left foot on B”. They keep going until someone falls or makes a mistake, and the winning team gets a point. Then on to the next two! I usually just try to make sure that the staff is big enough and the students stick to their own sides so there isn’t any actual tangling of limbs for safety issues.
Also there are some fun Jeopardy templates online that can be used with different smart boards – or you can tape questions to the board. Mix up note identification, rhythm clapping, instrument family identification, etc!
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