Last night, two classes of third graders completed their “Music Showcase Night”… with rave reviews!! On the agenda was a couple runs of “Hot Cross Buns” on the recorder, demonstrating a song and game, teaching parents the song and game and playing the game with either a parent or sibling. Then, students demonstrated one of their favorite movement improvisation activities- FREEZE DANCE!
The kids and parents both seemed to be laughing and enjoying themselves. It was my desire to get the parents involved and interested in what their kids were doing.
I gave a quick “Welcome to the 3rd grade music showcase. Hi, my name is” and let the kids take over with a little guidance from me. Overall, it was a fast-paced, fun music night!
I am so very proud of 2/5 of my third graders. I predict I will be proud of the other 3/5 tonight after the final three showcases. I’ll be full of pride when I go home tonight and take a sick day tomorrow- sinus infection!! PERSEVERE and last until 8pm! I can do it!
In class, I have a “Musician of the Month” bulletin board. I change the photo the information at the beginning of each month (I try!) based on a famous composer/musicians birthday. For example, January is Mozart’s birthday, so he was the “Musician of the Month” for January.
I choose some strange ones as well to give my kids a broad range of information. For example, I have personally met Joshua Bell a couple times and very much respect him as a Classical musician and think his violin playing is beautiful. His birthday is in December, so he was our studied musician in December. Currently, it is the month of my Grandfather’s birthday, and he played the accordion back in his hay day, so I have his accordion and we are learning and dancing a Polka! The kids looooove it!! having the actual accordion from my grandfather’s photos is a great addition. Then we watch a quick 3-minute video on how the sound is made inside the accordion and then listen to a sample accordion song from Wikipedia.
We only lightly study the composers for a couple weeks, but at least it gives them a well-rounded knowledge and an intorduction to many musicians, styles and genres.
“MUSIC SHOWCASE NIGHT!”
In lieu of doing a musical, I recommend you do a showcase night with one of your upper grades. For me, it is third grade. Each class will come to the music room for 30 minutes at a time. The students, with my guidance, will give a 25 minute showcase for their parents about things they’ve been working on in music class. Then they leave, and another class comes in. We do the performance again for their set of parents.
For example, my third grade classes are playing a recorder song all together, performing a folk dance, improvising instruments with a story and playing their favorite singing game. A student will explain a little bit about each activity prior to beginning.
Not only is this a great experience for the students, but also for the parents to see what their kids have been doing in music class all this year. Also, some parents have never set foot in the music classroom. It is great for the parents to see that music has changed since they went to school and we don’t just sing out of books.
I have received such positive feedback every time! Give it a try! I think you’ll like it!