Category Archives: Top 10 Tuesday ACTIVITIES

Check out some fun music education activities to do at home with your children!

Music Rules

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Happy Top 10 Tuesday, Tucson Songstress Friends!  In Tucson, it’s back-to-school season already, and my own kids start in their classrooms on Thursday.  So I thought today would be a great way to establish some school (or home) rules and refresh their memory with a musical notation lesson at the same time.

 

First, determine some important rules for school.

–Be respectful
–Be a good listener
–Follow the directions
–Be a participant

Before showing your child what those words look like notated, see if they can write out the notes themselves.

Notation_SchoolRules1

From the “Back To School” Music Pinterest Board. CLICK HERE to view.

Or try the Golden Rule:

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  That is the Golden Rule, and at school we have others.

From the Third Street Music blog

From the Third Street Music blog

Once you’ve come up with some of your own rules and have notated them, take out one of your Top 10 Tuesday musical instruments.  I prefer to use a pitched instrument for this assignment, because you can hold out the notes if you need to.  The recorder is a great instrument to work with since it is used in many school music classes.

Recorder

Recorders can be purchased in music stores or even some drug stores, but for convenience sake, CLICK HERE to see the listing on Amazon.com.

It is not necessary to play any actual notes for this notation lesson, just use the recorder to hold out the notes for as long or as little as the musical notation indicates.  Your child will be well on their way to getting back into the school groove in a very groovy way.

I hope you have enjoyed this week’s Top 10 Tuesday musical activity.  Check back every week for some more musical fun.  For an archive of previous activities, CLICK HERE, and until next Tuesday, play on!

 

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Cheer Rhythm

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cheer-poms-md

Happy Top 10 Tuesday, Tucson Songstress friends.  It’s Maccabia week at camp, which is like a color war.  Campers are divided up into color teams, and they compete against each other over three days of friendly competitions filled with zany spirit and fun.  Besides having a great time, it’s a great lesson for campers to learn the value of sportsmanship, and by doing so, they cheer each other on.

Cheering is a great way to practice rhythm.  It utilizes movement with and is a really great way to get children thinking in a rhythmical way.  So, for today’s activity, get out your pom poms and get ready to cheer!

The first basic concept of cheering is knowing some commonly used cheers, being able to recite them in a rhythmic way and adding claps at certain designated points.  The website www.topcheers.com has a whole list of cheers to practice with your child and audio recordings to go along with each one to hear how they are supposed to sound.

Once your child has mastered a few of these cheers, it is time to add some movement to them.

Here’s a simple Go, Fight, Win cheer:

Here’s a simple Let’s Go cheer!

And the “Rowdy” cheer

The “Who Rocks the House” Cheer

Your child will have a blast playing cheerleader for a day and will be practice a great musical concept at the same time.  Have fun and get out the video camera!

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Top 10 Tuesday music activity. For a complete list of the musical instruments under $40 that will help to promote music education in the home, click HERE.  For an archive of previous Top 10 Tuesday music activities, click HERE.  Make sure to check back every Tuesday for some more musical fun, and until next week, play on!

Making Music Out of Rain

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Photo from the National Wildlife Federation website

Happy Top 10 Tuesday, Tucson Songstress friends!  It’s the rainy monsoon season in Tucson, and parents are scrambling to find great rainy day activities.  Tucson is very much an outdoor community, so when it rains and we’re stuck indoors, it complicates our ebb and flow.

When a monsoon is rolling in, it’s pretty obvious when it’s going to rain.  There are rarely surprise showers.  So, here’s a really fun musical activity to try that will help your household embrace the monsoons!

Making Rain Music

(1)  Gather a variety of metal pots and pans of all sizes and shapes and find a spot to place them outdoors just as it’s about to rain.  Near a window is best so you can watch them from the inside of your house.

(2)  When it starts to rain, you will hear thuds and pings and all different kinds of sounds coming from the pots and pans depending on their size.

(3)  Brave the waters!  If there is no thunder and lightening, go outside in the rain to hear the “rain music” more clearly!

The National Wildlife Federation put a step by step instruction called “Make Rain Music” on their family fun page.  CLICK HERE to check it out!  The NWF is a great resource, and any site that promotes making music outdoors is fantastic in my book!

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Top 10 Tuesday music activity. For a complete list of the musical instruments under $40 that will help to promote music education in the home, click HERE.  For an archive of previous Top 10 Tuesday music activities, click HERE.  Make sure to check back every Tuesday for some more musical fun, and until next week, play on!

How To Make a REAL Rainstick

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Photo from the Imagination Tree blog

Photo from the Imagination Tree blog

It drives me a little bonkers.  Preschoolers come home with paper towel tubes filled with rice and closed off on the ends with duct tape.  “Awww, you made a shaker,” I comment, as I always zero in on any home-made musical instruments.  “It’s a rain stick,” they proudly respond correcting me for what they think is a gross error.

I don’t get into it with them, because they are, after all, proud of their accomplishment, and who am I to tell them that they have, in fact, made a shaker – not a rain stick.  I bite my tongue and walk away knowing that teachers are probably being cautious, because real rain sticks are made with hammer and nails.  They have to be.  It is the nails in a tube that stagger the sound and give a rain effect.

I found an excellent blog that gives step by step instructions on how to make a REAL rain stick.  It is called “The Imagination Tree.”  CLICK HERE to see their excellent step by step DIY instructions with great pictures.

You can always buy a rain stick.  I like this one, because you can see the inner workings of it:

Rainstick

Here’s a link to the see-through rain stick on AMAZON.COM.

In my opinion, it’s more fun to make one though…especially on all of the rainy days we’ve been having here in Tucson.  It’s a perfect Top 10 Tuesday activity, so go for it!

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Top 10 Tuesday music activity. For a complete list of the musical instruments under $40 that will help to promote music education in the home, click HERE.  For an archive of previous Top 10 Tuesday music activities, click HERE.  Make sure to check back every Tuesday for some more musical fun, and until next week, play on!

 

 

A Sousa Parade for the 4th

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Happy Top 10 Tuesday, blog readers!  The 4th of July is only 3 days away, and one of the greatest traditions that goes along with it are parades.  Every child loves a good parade, so this is the perfect opportunity to get out all of the musical instruments you have lying around at home and to turn on Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever.”

From Kindermusik

From Kindermusik

“Stars and Stripes Forever” became the United States’s national march in 1897, and for all of the years since then, it has become a staple for the 4th of July.

So, expose your kids to America’s national march, and get them making music this July 4th!  Have fun!

Campy Music

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Rise and shine, campers!!!

Today is the first day of summer camp in Tucson, AZ, and boy is my whole family excited.  In my household, camp is a big deal!  My husband is a camp director, I’m a music specialist, and my kids are the happiest little campers around.

Because we are “all camp” around here, I thought I’d give all of you Camp Mommies, a fun campy music activity today as a Top 10 Tuesday Music Activity.  This activity comes from an excellent camp website called “Ultimate Camp Resource.”  For all of you at-home camp families, this is a great site for you to figure out some fun summer activities, songs, art projects, skits, campfire stories, etc.  Here is the link to the main home page:  http://www.ultimatecampresource.com

Now for the fun music activity…

Sleeping Bag

Musical Sleeping Bags

This is like musical chairs. Lay the sleeping bags in a circle. There should be one less sleeping bag than the total number of players. Begin the music, everyone walks in a circle on top of the bags. When the music stops each person must get into a sleeping bag. Only one person per bag!! The person left with out a sleeping bag is out. 

 

So, amp up your musical chairs camp style and have fun!  That’s what camp is all about!.  Enjoy & happy camping!

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Top 10 Tuesday music activity. For a complete list of the musical instruments under $40 that will help to promote music education in the home, click HERE.  For an archive of previous Top 10 Tuesday music activities, click HERE.  Make sure to check back every Tuesday for some more musical fun, and until next week, play on!

The Elvis Impersonator

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I just came back from a trip to Las Vegas, and the long weekend has inspired my Top 10 Tuesday music activity today.

Las Vegas is known for Elvis impersonators and even more awesomely – the music of Elvis.  I thought it might be fun today to create the next generation of Elvis impersonators and get your kiddos dancing and singing like the King of Rock ‘n Roll himself.

First, show your kids some great Elvis movie footage.  Here he is singing “Viva Las Vegas,” of course…

 

Here are the lyrics to the song:

Bright light city gonna set my soul
Gonna set my soul on fire
Got a whole lot of money that’s ready to burn,
So get those stakes up higher
There’s a thousand pretty women waitin’ out there
And they’re all livin’ devil may care
And I’m just the devil with love to spare
Viva Las Vegas, Viva Las Vegas

How I wish that there were more
Than the twenty-four hours in the day
‘Cause even if there were forty more
I wouldn’t sleep a minute away
Oh, there’s black jack and poker and the roulette wheel
A fortune won and lost on ev’ry deal
All you need’s a strong heart and a nerve of steel
Viva Las Vegas, Viva Las Vegas

Viva Las Vegas with you neon flashin’
And your one armbandits crashin’
All those hopes down the drain
Viva Las Vegas turnin’ day into nighttime
Turnin’ night into daytime
If you see it once
You’ll never be the same again

I’m gonna keep on the run
I’m gonna have me some fun
If it costs me my very last dime
If I wind up broke up well
I’ll always remember that I had a swingin’ time
I’m gonna give it ev’rything I’ve got
Lady luck please let the dice stay hot
Let me shout a seven with ev’ry shot
Viva Las Vegas, Viva Las Vegas,
Viva, Viva Las Vegas

Once they learn the melody, ask them to sing the song like Elvis.

And now they need to move like Elvis!  There are some great instructional Elvis dance videos on Youtube.

Here are the Elvis legs:

Here’s the “Elvis Kick”

Once your kids have mastered the moves and the singing, it’s time to become Elvis.  Get out some shades, flip up your collar, put on a big chunky belt or sash, slick back the hair, and if you really want to go glitz and glam…hot glue some blingy rhinestones to your clothes.  Just shy of buying an Elvis costume..do the best you can with what’s lying around the house to get them in the Elvis mood.  Here are a couple of great pint-sized Elvis photos I found online.

Elvis1

And last but not least…to really get them into Elvis…show them a clip of a young Bruno Mars doing his Elvis impersonation from “Honeymoon in Vegas.”  He’s adorable!

I am sure turning your kid(s) into an Elvis impersonator could bring you hours of fun.  Elvis made some great music, and this is music appreciation hands on!  Go for it!

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Top 10 Tuesday music activity. For a complete list of the musical instruments under $40 that will help to promote music education in the home, click HERE.  For an archive of previous Top 10 Tuesday music activities, click HERE.  Make sure to check back every Tuesday for some more musical fun, and until next week, play on!