Manipulative Monday

No, I'm sad to report that I'm not a day EARLY but rather almost a week LATE in joining Lindsay's Manipulative Monday Linky Party:
But, I guess as they say, better late than never!!!

With Valentine's Day behind and looking forward towards the next holiday (St. Patrick's Day) I thought I'd share some finds that I have so you have time to get them, if you're interested in using them for your classroom.

First stop is the Dollar Tree.  There you'll find foam Shamrocks.
These are too big for my felt staff board but I have some other uses for them.
Use number 1, comparatives:
These are great for kindergarten, especially with chants.  Chants are so versatile for comparatives because you can say them any way.  You could have them all turned over, like in the first picture, and then have the students pick a shamrock and have the class perform it that way.  If you want to use it as an assessment, then have that individual perform the chant by themselves, using the shamrock that they picked.

Use number 2, rhythm:
Using a sharpie you can easily tailor these to use with whatever rhythmic concept you're working on.  They could be used for dictation, composition, etc.    Additionally, you could also do the same with putting solfa on the shamrocks and making tone ladders to practice whatever melodic concepts you are practicing OR preparing at the time (if preparing you simply would have some shamrocks that have a "?" on them)

The other manipulative can be found at good old Oriental Trading.  These are foam shamrock beads and come in three sizes and a couple different hues of green:

These can be used a few ways.  First for rhythm prep of ta & ti-ti.  I know that my first graders are past that but I might try some short/long patterns with my kinders:

The other way I'm going to use these is with my Shamrock Shuffle Melodic Files games, specifically with as a stick to staff activity.  The students will see a stick notation pattern, such as this:

and then using the medium sized shamrock write it on the staff.

They can also use them to write known patterns on the staff, such as this phrase of Rocky Mountain:

Speaking of those Shamrock Shuffle Files, I'm currently running a little special.  For each file, the first five people that purchase and rate the file can email me and I will send them another Shamrock Shuffle file of their choice for FREE!  The Bundled Rhythm Set is also marked down to $15 until tomorrow night.

A special thanks to Lindsay for hosting the Linky Party!  Be sure to check out all the amazing ideas that the other participants blogged about!

Have a great week and check back on Wednesday for my FIRST time hosting a Linky Party!!

Winter Games

I was hoping that my next blog would be linking up with Aileen's "Five Favorite Pins Linky Party" but I just can't get ahead this year and have barely been on Pinterest lately.  I've made a New Year's resolution to work out more (which, I've done a really good job keeping) and to spend more time with my kids.  That includes making these for their Valentine's Day Parties (okay, this was a Pinterest thing but I don't think that's what Aileen meant, lol):

And making this for Noah's Heritage project, his name is Sven and he's from Sweden (this is before he got his mouth, lol):

So, hopefully next month I can join Aileen's party!  Be sure to head over and check it out!

I have been playing some "Winter Games" in my room.  I mentioned these in the blog post I did about the Facebook Free For All.  There are a variety of games included and since I've created it I came up with more ideas of how to simulate the Olympics through these files.  

Here's one that I did with my fifth graders.  We talked about how there are multiple events going on at a time during the Olympics.  So, the kiddos divided into groups of 3-4 and each were given a set of cards representing different sports, here's a sample card from each set:

The students were told that the people in their group were their fellow competitors.  They spread the cards out, so that all the members of the group could see the cards, like this:

I showed them a flashcard, written in stick notation (so it was a stick to staff solfége practice), like this:
The object of the game was to be the first person in their group to identify the staff card in their stack that matched the stick notation.
It was really sweet to see how some groups, even though they were competiting against each other, really helped each other out.  They loved it and I was able to make some assessments on who could identify the patterns and who was completely guessing.  The benefit of this was that they were in really small groups so they all were engaged and taking part in the activity.

Here are the links to the files, if you're interested in them and you can read more about what the files contain on blog post mentioned earlier in the blog.

Melodic files:
  1. so-mi
  2. la
  3. do 
  4. re (mi-re-do only)
  5. re (pentatonic)
  6. low la
  7. low so
  8. high do
  9. fa
  10. ti
Rhythmic files:

I hope that you all are enjoying your long weekend!

a Kodaly inspired blog Amy Abbott Colorado music elementary teacher ideas files downloads
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Cupid's Arrow Game

Love and rhythm are in the air in first grade!  My first graders are reading and practicing ta, ti-ti and rest so I created a "Cupid's Arrow Game" for  them that we use as a whole class, but they work in groups of three.

Here's how we play:
First there are the cards and "arrows":
I use the Nerf Darts from the Nerf Dart guns (you can get these are Walmart, Target, etc. but make sure you get the suction cup ends.  They've come out with "gel" darts, those I just see getting dirty and not lasting long).

I laminate my cards and the darts have enough suction to actually lift the card, like so:

Each group gets a set of 12 cards, each of which contain the same rhythm patterns.
They set them out so that all the members of their group can see them.  The cards are also numbered so that after I've clapped the patter a couple times I give them answer so they can check their work.  Each student is "armed" with a dart that they will use to hopefully "shoot" the card with the rhythm that matches the pattern they hear.  I clasp the pattern and they look for it:

With my first graders I never said anything about this being a "competition."  It led to some interesting results: some groups were very competitive with each other while other groups were very collaborative and celebrated when someone in their group identified the correct pattern.  It was an interesting assessment too.  Three of my four first grade classes nailed this activity; it was almost too easy.  The fourth class (which is also the hardest with classroom management) struggled with identifying the correct rhythms.  This lets me know that this class needs more remediation and won't be going on to so-mi as soon as the other classes.

I've made many leveled sets of these, that you can find at my TpT store.  Sets were made for the following concepts:

  1. ta ti-ti
  2. rest
  3. half note 
  4. tika-tika
  5. ti-tika
  6. tika-ti
  7. syncopa
  8. tom-ti
  9. ti-tom
  10. tim-ka
  11. 6/8
  12. bundle
I hope you all are staying warm, it's FREEZING here in Colorado!!!

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