It’s group week here at my studio… which means I have new games to share! I apologize for the lack of new posts as of late. The last few months I’ve been juggling a rather hefty list of “to-do’s” as a teacher, accompanist and event chairperson for a couple of local associations. Between those responsibilities and a wonderful trip to New York for last week’s MTNA Conference, I’ve realized that I’ve become a rather neglectful blogger!! (On a bright note… I *have* tried out several new games and activities with my students this spring that I’m looking forward to sharing. Stay tuned… April should be a fun month!!)
This week, we’re devoting our group time to listening and ear training activities. Here’s a peek at an activity I used with my elementary students to work on melodic recognition… with a spring-time twist:
Easter Egg Melody Hunt
For this activity, I printed a couple of spring-themed song sheets from the Kididdles website. (If you haven’t ever discovered this site, be sure to check it out! I use this all the time when I need familiar songs for group activities.) To go with our spring theme this month, we used “Little Bunny Foo Foo” and “Rain, Rain, Go Away.”
I cut each of the songs apart into one-measure pieces, making sure to leave just the notes (no lyrics, measure numbers, etc.) then “hid” each piece inside a plastic Easter egg:
When students arrived, we were ready for an Easter egg hunt! It only took them a couple of minutes to collect all of the eggs from throughout the studio and make a pile in the middle of the room. We divided the eggs so that each student had an equal number, then students opened each egg to find the melody snippets inside.
Next, we re-constructed our sheet music puzzle, measure by measure. I played a measure at the piano, and students searched through their papers to find one that matched. Since good melodies use repetition, there were often several students who had a copy of the same measure. It became a race to see who could be the first to jump up with the measure in hand!
Here’s a picture of one of our finished “puzzles”:
I know that I’m posting this a little on the late side for anyone looking for Easter-themed activities. But… I also know that those little plastic eggs will be really cheap on after-Easter sales next Monday, and that my students would gladly go on an Easter egg hunt just about any time of the year! You could easily do this activity without the eggs – just print the music on bright colored paper and hide the pieces throughout your studio for students to hunt and find.