This is a guest post by one of our blog writers, Katherine Miller.
Choice boards are not a new idea but they have become very popular as music teachers worldwide are trying to figure out how to best provide a music education in the virtual world.
They are a great option to provide lots of opportunities for students to continue to be the makers of music at home while providing some flexibility and understanding that not all students’ homes look the same.
You can find out more information about using and setting up your own choice boards in our previous blog post How to Use Choice Boards in the Music Classroom
Here are 30 ideas for activities that could be included on a choice board for elementary music students to help them continue to learn and be active music makers at home.
Use Choice Boards for Creating
- Create sound effects to go with your favorite story
- Use found sounds to create your own accompaniment to a song
- Make an instrument from items at home
- Design your own slogan with Little Kids Rock
- Use instruments from around the world to create music or, even, Boomwhackers
Use Choice Boards for Performing
- Perform a song from class to someone new
- Perform a song with different voices (sing, talk, whisper, etc.), tempos, or dynamics
- Play rhythms along with play along videos with Visual Musical Minds on Youtube
- Sing along with a warm up video on Youtube
- Practice correct breathing
Using Choice Boards for Writing
- Write rhythm patterns to perform
- Write a simple melody using known syllables
- Write new lyrics to a song
- Interview a grownup about their musical history
- Read about musician and write about what you learned
Using Choice Boards for Moving
- Create your own ostinato using body percussion
- Learn and play a jump roping song like Teddy Bear
- Move to the steady beat of a song (jump, dance, march, clap, etc.)
- Dance it out with Go Noodle
- Use a scarf or towel to show the melodic contour as you listen to song
Using Choice Boards for Listening
- Evaluate a musical performance
- Watch a musical
- Listen to a song and draw a picture of how it makes you feel
- Listen to a podcast
- Learn about something new by watching an informational video
Use Choice Boards for Technology
- Explore Chrome Music Lab, Mario Sequencer, Incredibox or Groove Pizza
- Create a word search with musical terms
- Check out ThingLink to learn about the elements of music or tour an orchestra
- Brush up on your music reading skills
- Go on a Fliphunt!
This list is just the beginning!
What activities have you thought of that could be included on a choice board for elementary music students? We would love to keep this list growing with your ideas!
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About the writer
Katherine (Katie) Miller holds a Bachelor of Music in Education degree from Otterbein University (Westerville, OH) and a Masters of Educational Leadership from Antioch McGregor Midwest (Yellow Springs, OH). She has 15 years of professional musical experience as a music educator and performer.
She is currently employed by the School District of Waukesha in Waukesha, WI, where she teaches K-5 General Music and serves as a district model tech classroom. She was recognized in 2018 as a WPT Education Innovator by Wisconsin Public Television Education team.
Looking for More Resources for Music Teachers?
Hello! I’m Katie Wardrobe – an Australian music technology trainer and consultant with a passion for helping music teachers through my business Midnight Music.
I’m a qualified teacher but no, I don’t currently teach in a school. I help teachers through my online professional development space – the Midnight Music Community – where there are tutorial videos, courses, links and downloadable resources.
I like to focus on easy ways to incorporate technology into what you are already doing in your music curriculum through a range of creative projects. I also run live workshops and have presented at countless conferences and other music education events.
If you want simple, effective ideas for using technology in music education, I would LOVE to help you inside the Midnight Music Community.