Get In-Tune with your Elementary Music Concert Programs: Fun with Travel & Food

Why These Themes?:

Every year I look at the specific classes and what they're particular interests may be and how could I challenge them. Doing this allows me to make additional connections with students by showing I take an interest in their interests. It allows us to look outside the realm of traditional concert music and to be able to appreciate and perform many different styles and genres. 

Rehearsing for the Concerts:

My school runs specials on a 4 class rotation. However, I see the same class for 3 days in a row and then rotate to the next rotation. Our concert was scheduled at the beginning of November. Because of this rotation, I had to start introducing music in much earlier than normal. 

Many of the songs used an accompaniment or karaoke track that I had to locate. We did include a few folk songs and rounds that were sung without accompaniment. 

Having a dress rehearsal was tough. We perform our concerts at the high school and don't have a chance for all students to run through the program before they take the stage. We try to best replicate it in our room or gym. 

Due to COVID and my cancer treatments, this is the first time that either of these grades have had a grade level concert in quite a few years! 

4th Grade - The Places We'll Go!:

Fourth grades program focused on travel and locations, especially those in the United States. Here's their program & some of the fun things we added:

50 Nifty United States

Added posters that spelled out Colorado for the North, South, East, West portion of the song. 
This was difficult to time. Students are always so excited and sing the first time through too fast.

What Did Delaware?

This song was incredibly special to me and a memorable moment to hear my students sing it. For those who may not know, my dad passed away this fall. He used to sing this to me all the time and make up the most ridiculous verses, twisting the pronunciation of states to the maximum. 

We Know the Way

Take Me Home, Country Roads

If I Had a Wagon (Colorado)

The Car Song

I love using this song for a program! We have the audience select one of the sound effects to eliminate and it's always fun to see the students and parents engaged during this portion of the concert. 

Yellow Submarine

Party in the USA

For this piece, we had it organized as a sing a long. Students left the stage with glow in the dark props and each audience member received 2 glow bracelets. We turned the lights down and had the projector screen up so families could see the words. It was so fun to see them (or their shadows, at least) moving together. 

5th Grade - Serving up Songs, Just for You: 

Food, Glorious Food (from Oliver! Jr)

Students actually started this piece from the audience and marched up on stage. This was our schools musical in 2022. Although none of the fifth graders were in the show, many had siblings or attended the show and were familiar with the music. 

Corn Puddin' (from Schmigadoon!) 

We had some additional help on this piece from our assistant principal and counselor! 

You can get an idea of the song from here

Scottish Breakfast Canon

I learned this song from my level 2 CSU Kodály students in 2019. Our amazing Conducting and Choir Instructor, Ciara, taught it to them and they would not stop singing it! There is a video on my instagram of them performing the canon. 

Do, Re, Mi (from the Sound of Music)

Spoonful of Sugar (from Mary Poppins Jr.)

Pepperoni Pizza, Please

This is a super fun parody on Alexander Hamilton from the Hamilton musical. There is one person who works at the pizzeria, one who is placing the order, and some additional solos and chorus. We had costumes, props, and a lot of fun with this one!

Check out the original video here

Cheeseburger in Paradise

To end this concert, we included another audience sing a long in honor of Jimmy Buffet. 

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