Music Note Manipulatives & Music Note Activities for Early Music Learners

Music Note Manipulatives & Music Note Activities for Early Music Learners

Music Note Manipulatives

Music Note Manipulatives for Early Music Learners

Here’s a really quick way to make some easy, durable, and cheap music note manipulatives. I used craft foam sheets – you can find multicolor packs in most craft aisles or here’s an Amazon Affiliate Link to some to order!

Craft Foam

Music Note Manipulatives for Early Music Learners

I cut out note shapes out of the foam using the colors as close to Boomwhackers as I could. I only used note heads as my goal for this activity was a VERY basic intro to composition and learning to read lines from left to right. There was no need for stems or flags as I’m not focusing on rhythm concepts at this time. We will do our best to play our songs with a steady beat, however! The notes don’t need to be perfect, and as you can see, mine are a bit rough – but they do the job!

Freebie Music Note Manipulative Product on TpT

Another option – I made a quick Freebie of manipulatives you can print and cut out. Music Note Manipulatives Freebie Link

Personally I prefer the foam cut outs because they are more durable, unless you laminate the printed version.

But if you do download this free product, do me a favor and leave us a review on our store if you found it useful!!

Music Note Activities for Early Learners

Placing music note manipulatives.

I use these with my own 3 year old toddlers to do some very basic composition and note reading activities. We take turns picking what color comes next, typically they want to just put them in rainbow order 🤣. Again, my goal for this activity was a VERY basic intro to composition and learning to read lines from left to right. I have varying degrees of success with my three year olds, but I don’t expect a ton from them at this age. This activity can work well for pre-school, kindergarten, and even the first few years of grade school!

Write out a tune with the color notes.

Another activity I do with my toddlers is to “write out” a melody they know. So I’ll place the notes in the order of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, then play it for them and work on melody recognition.

Other good songs to do: Row Row Row Your Boat, Mary Had a Little Lamb, This Old Man, etc.!

Thanks for reading!

I hope this can be useful in some way to you in your classroom or with your own children! I’m hoping to do some more activities like these in the coming months so if you liked this be sure to follow us on our socials (top and bottom of page) to stay updated. Thanks!!

Self-Grading Listening Activities with Google Forms

Self-Grading Listening Activities with Google Forms
Free Digital Listening Journal Image

“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.” ― Victor Hugo

Listening Selections for Listening Journals

I like to have my 6-12 general music, band, and choir students do an online listening journal activity about every other week. We use a standard format to keep it straight forward and use a wide variety of music to have the students listen to. We complete these via Google Forms which is an amazing resource for just about any classroom. The 2nd best part of these listening journals? They are SELF-GRADING! (keep reading for the #1 best part of these listening journals – hint: THEY ARE FREE!) I insert a YouTube video into the beginning of the form – HOW TO video! Then, each activity has 11 questions.

Questions Asked:

  • What instruments do you hear?
  • Are there voices in the music?
  • What other sounds are in the music (if any)?
  • What type of group is performing?
  • What dynamics are used in this song?
  • Are the dynamics consistent from the beginning to the end of the song or do they change throughout the song?
  • What tempos are used in this song?
  • Is the tempo consistent from the beginning to the end of the song or does it change throughout the song?
  • When do you think this music was composed?
  • In your opinion, what emotion does this piece of music evoke?
  • Write one paragraph about this piece of music. Examples of what to write about: Did you like it? Why or why not? What did it remind you of? If it was telling a story, what would it be? Would you listen to it again? ETC.

Now, obviously some of these questions are opinion and/or subjective – therefore they are not “self-grading”. But, I just made the questions that have clear right and wrong answers worth points. The other questions were required, but were there more to get the students thinking about the music rather than worrying about the right answer. I would go back through and briefly read their responses to the other questions, just to ensure they weren’t simply going through the motions – overall I saw a lot of engagement from students while doing these! These even led to some really interesting class discussions!

The #1 best part? We’re giving our listening journals away for FREE!

The best part of this blog post? I’m sharing 16 of my listening journals I created FOR FREE! All you have to do is sign-up for my newsletter and you’ll automatically receive a document that will allow you to make a copy of all of these into your Google Drive and you can immediately assign them to your students (via Google Classroom, emailing, or sending them the link). PLUS I’m including a blank one for you to create your own! These questions work with ANY piece of music so you can really use whatever you want the students to listen to! You’ll have to add the correct answers and adjust the answer key to make sure it grades it for you – HOW TO video, but it’s actually very simple! For a more in depth description and general overview of how to use Google Forms (and integrate with Google Classroom) check out this YouTube video.

Music Selected

When I said variety, I MEANT it! Jazz, hip-hop, concert band, choral, pop, acoustic, orchestral, video game soundtracks, country, and more… The list really just spawned from things I heard that I liked, things we were maybe looking into for band or choir. There is zero rhyme or reason to this list!

How do I get all this great free stuff again?

Sign-Up for our newsletter below and you’ll automatically receive an email containing a PDF that will link you to make a copy of all of the listening journals for the songs listed above. This is a great FREE product that we do not make available in any other way! We will also send updates on new products, future freebies, and info about upcoming sales. You won’t get a crazy amount of emails from us (maybe 2 a month) and we won’t give your email to anyone. PROMISE!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

Music Distance Learning

Music Distance Learning
Untitled presentation

We’ve put together a list of materials that we’ve created and/or can be used for E-Learning/Distance Learning/Remote Teaching. This post is being updated as we create new content – to receive updates when we add new products – sign up for our newsletter below!!





Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

Updates to our Music Distance Learning Products

Theory Experts: Music Theory Curriculum – Printable PDFs and Digital Interactive Google Slides. This curriculum was designed to work in person and for distance learning. We have created 3 different levels to work for all ages K-12, you can purchase them as a bundle or individually as you need.  Each lesson contains instructions and guides on the page for students to be able to learn on their own or with a parent’s help. We have ALSO created video lessons that directly accompany the lessons. View the YouTube playlist HERE.

Music From a Distance – A completely no prep packet for shorter term distance learning that can be used on Google Slides, TpT Easel or printed and sent home. Also includes several samples of our other products that work for distance learning.

Check out our growing list of Boom Cards™ available on our Boom Learning store!
Boom Cards™ are digital interactive task cards that make learning fun and provide instant feedback for students.


FREE Music Distance Learning Resources

We are giving away 16 FREE Listening Journals that use a variety of music, are ready for distance learning, are self-grading, and are done via Google Forms. You can’t go wrong with free things right? Find out more info in our new blog post SELF-GRADING LISTENING ACTIVITIES WITH GOOGLE FORMS.

I highly encourage everyone to take a look at my Noteflight Mystery Song Assignment Blog Post – This is a great FREE activity that teaches students about chord progressions, creating a bass line, etc. – It also helps them learn how to use notation software!  From there, if you want to continue along this path, I recommending looking into my Mystery Song Bundle.

A one week safety net review plan mostly using MusicTheory.net  This incorporates perfectly into Google Classroom with people dealing with a 1-1 computer situation.  You can literally copy and paste the information directly out of this and make assignments in Google Classroom!  View the Google Doc Unit Plan here.

Try some FREE samples of great products:
Music of Africa (Presentation & Guided Notes)
John Williams (Presentation & Guided Notes)
Color by Music Mystery Image


Project Based Learning – Middle School & High School


We have several projects geared towards Middle School & High School. Distance learning provides ample opportunity for students to work at their own pace on a project. View our bundle of projects (also available to purchase separately). Included in this bundle are a large scale Music Genre Research ProjectMusic Time Period Research Project, smaller Music Genre Presentation ProjectComposer Presentation ProjectMusic Culture Presentation Project, and an Instrument Presentation Project.


Presentation & Guided Note Units

All of these units are completely digital and ready for distance learning.  We have a Music Cultures: World Music Unit, Composers: Music History Unit, and Instrument Family Unit.  All units have Google Slide Presentations and guided notes (print and digital) to accompany them.  There are EXCELLENT links to YouTube videos for students to experience what is being discussed.  For a complete walk through of “How to use Presentation & Guided Note Units for Distance Learning” in multiple situations- read our blog post HERE.


Elementary Specific Ideas

We have three completely independent sing-along and activity books that could be sent home with students. All of the products come with sheet music, color by music pages, and other activities to keep students learning about music from home. Can You Count? is a song about learning the value of whole notes, half notes, quarter notes, and 8th notes . Name the Notes is a song about about learning the lines and spaces of the treble clef. Old Blue is a fun song about living with a faithful dog. These are great send home packets for elementary students. Each product also has a sing-along video hosted on Raonna Studio’s YouTube (linked below).

If you want updates when we release new products – sign up for our newsletter!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

I hope this list at least gives you some ideas to help during this difficult time! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to Contact Us.

The 5 Minute Challenge A Music Classroom Activity

The 5 Minute Challenge A Music Classroom Activity
7

The 5 Minute Challenge a Music Classroom Activity

The 5 Minute Challenge is something I do with my students K-12, though mostly with K-8.  We use MusicTheory.com’s Note Identification Exercises.

You can customize them however you would like in the top right corner.

 I give the students 5 minutes to get as many correct answers as possible. We make a loop around the classroom and students go up to the screen, select the answer, then move along the loop. This can also be a great break when students need to move a little bit. BUT it is still reinforcing concepts!

If management becomes an issue, I simply bring a halt to the loop movement but the timer continues!

I have each grade do an exercise that is appropriate for their level.  For these scores, my Kindergartners, 1st graders, and 2nd graders did ONLY the treble clef notes.  3rd and up did the entire grand staff!  As you can see, third grade is a little slow – but they are accurate!  7th grade is currently leading the challenge. You can really use any sort of quick paced review activity for this challenge!

This is just a great activity to promote a little healthy competition among my classes.  I will say, that my high school choir does not do this very often, so please don’t judge me for their lower score!  As you can see, they don’t even have a regular spot on the board!  We’ve been swamped with contests this time of year, so they rarely get to do the 5 Minute Challenge.  Also – Kindergarten is on the bottom because they originally weren’t in the competition, later when they started learning the notes of the treble clef (yes, they CAN do it!) they joined.

I keep track of my scores on the white board.

Creating the tracker for The 5 Minute Challenge Music Classroom Activity

Your tracker can be as simple as you want – you don’t even need to track if you don’t want to! I personally think a little healthy competition can be a good thing! All of the materials I used to create my tracker can be found easily at your local dollar store or craft store.  I have provided some links to Amazon resources if that works easier for you!  These are affiliate links so I will receive a small bonus if you buy through them!

I created the chart on the main whiteboard in my classroom using painters tape. I used a foam sheet to create the arrow marking the current leaders, and hot glued a small craft magnet on it so it’s easily movable.

This is a great activity to give students a break from whatever you’re doing. It gets the moving but they are still LEARNING and/or reviewing in the process! Here’s some other fun activities for music classrooms! Including my FREE dynamics posters shown in the picture above!

Sign up for our newsletter to receive updates, freebies, and notifications!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

Music Classroom Tour

Music Classroom Tour

I have a bit of a unique classroom – it is half of what used to be one HUGE room.  A few years before me, teacher situations changed.  They took the music room, cut it in half and made separate band and choir rooms.  So, to get to my choir room, you actually have to walk through the band room – it’s a little different but it works!  Also, when I took these pictures we were prepping for a concert, so I had risers out in my room.  Typically I have chairs set out in rows.  But here is my classroom!

1234

Music Classroom Tour Continued

I love my back wall!  My mother-in-law let me borrow her Cricut a few summers ago.  I cut out a ton of music notes.  Several of them didn’t survive the first year, but the ones that are still up have been on the wall for about 2 years now – not bad!  I also love my Boomwhacker storage (velcro on the wall, small strip of velcro on each boomwhacker – works great).

5

Here is the front of my classroom.  This is where I spend quite a bit of time (the piano, the Smart Board, etc.)  You can also see our tubanos which we just got this year through a big Donor’s Choose project!  I leave the left side of my board dedicated to keeping track of our 5 Minute Challenge Scores (read more about that here!)  On the left side of my white board is my dynamics display.  These are great to have front and center in the room to help forgetful students.  Purchase them from my Teachers Pay Teacher’s Store HERE!

6

More Music Classroom Tour

Up next is one of my students’ favorite parts of my room – Dave, the minion!  I drew the minion and colored him in by hand (much cheaper than a big print).  This is another Pinterest find!

8

This isn’t the prettiest part of my room – but it is definitely practical.  Here is the obligatory folder rack.  I get so much space and function out of this beast!  Choir folders, microphones for jazz choir (keeps them organized and protected), and my elementary folders.  Each class has a color folder (K=Red, 1st=Orange, etc.).  Each student has a folder with a number.  When my students need to get their folder they go to their slot number and find their color folder.  So each slot will have 5-6 different colored folders in it.  It let’s them find their folders quickly without taking up a ton of space!

9-3

This is my “stuff” wall.  We have all our ballots from contests throughout the year, pictures from our events, our calendar, and our classroom rules.  You can purchase my classroom rules from my Teachers Pay Teachers store HERE!

10

I can’t remember where I came up with this next idea – maybe it’s my idea originally – who knows!  On the back of my door I keep all of these little signs to tell my students what they need to bring when the come in to the classroom.  I put the signs I need on the opposite side of the door, they take a look and grab what they need for class without me having to say a word.  Works like a charm!  I now just use a whiteboard and write what the students need to grab when they come in the room!

12-2

Only a few stops left!  This is my word wall and solfege display.  Sorry for the glare in the pictures!  Purchase my solfege display from my Teachers Pay Teachers store here!

13

Our last stop is on our way out the door.  I have the students line up at this door before they leave.  If they’ve had a good day – their behavior was “Grand” and they get to move up in the staff.  Read more on my Grand Behavior system on my other blog post by click HERE!

14

That’s it folks!  Thanks for sticking with me, and I hope you enjoyed!

Sign up for our newsletter to receive updates, freebies, and notifications!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

Grand Behavior Music Classroom Management

Grand Behavior Music Classroom Management

Music Classroom Management Tool

We have all seen the “NOISE” post on Pinterest (when the students are making noise – they lose a letter).  I’ve taken that and combined it with a behavior chart!  I call it “Grand Behavior”.  It’s perfect because it also teaches the students about the grand staff!

When a class is misbehaving, or their behavior isn’t “grand” – they lose a letter at the whiteboard (bottom picture).  If later they show me behavior that is “grand” they can earn a letter back.  At the end of class time, if they still have all of their letters they have had “Grand Behavior” and they get to move up a spot on the grand staff.  I have them all start at the lowest line of the bass clef.  When they get to Middle C, they earn an incentive (center day, treat, game).  When they get to the top F of the treble clef, they also earn an incentive (similar).  After that, they have to start all the way back down at the bass clef. I usually get a little healthy competition among the classes!

Removing a letter from the whiteboard is a huge visual that all students notice without you having to use your voice.  As music teachers – we all know our voice is precious!

Creating this music classroom management tool.

All of the materials to create this can be found easily at your local dollar store or craft store.  I have provided some links to Amazon resources if that works easier for you!  These are affiliate links so I will receive a small bonus if you buy through them!

I created the chart using a whiteboard, painters tape, colored foam sheets, small craft magnets, and wooden letters. The foam sheets make very durable items.  I attached magnets on the back with hot glue.  These have lasted 2+ years.  I spray painted the letters black , and hot glued magnets to the back of them.

This is a wonderfully simple visual cue for classroom management that I found to be a very effective tool for elementary music classrooms! Here are some other great resources for elementary music classrooms!

Sign up for our newsletter to receive updates, freebies, and notifications!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

American Folk Songs for the Modern Classroom

American Folk Songs for the Modern Classroom

American Folk Songs for the Modern Classroom
A collection of 20 folk songs and sing-along audio files to be used in any classroom.

2Hello readers!  I received a grant from the Mary Chilton DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) Foundation to create a songbook of folk songs to be used in the modern classroom.  American Folk Music is an integral part to America’s culture and heritage.  Sadly, many of these songs are no longer being taught as they are seen as “too old,” or “not standards aligned.”  These songs are a huge part of our culture and used constantly within other compositions.  Students are missing out on the experience of them simply because they do not know them!

Check it out at my Teachers Pay Teachers page.  It is my featured free download.

These files are 100% free to you and ready to use.  Simply download and enjoy!

Sign up for our newsletter to receive updates, freebies, and notifications!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.