If you do not have Mallet Madness by Artie Almeida, you are missing out! This is my second year teaching and I don’t know why someone didn’t hit me over the head with this book and yell at me to use it. The activities are engaging (for me and the students) and just fabulous! I love the instrument activities and the lessons that include literature.
My room has been set up for Mallet Madness activities the past two weeks. Some of my favorite activities so far are: Crazy Eights, Body Director, Peanut Butter and Jelly, There Were Ten in the Bed and Jump, Frog, Jump! Also, the rotation chant is a quick and easy way for students to rotate to a variety of instruments. The instruments included in my set up are: temple blocks, conga drums, bongos, xylophones, metallaphones, glockenspiels and the bars. I have posted a couple of my Mallet Madness plans in the “lesson plans” section of this blog. More are on the way!
Mallet Madness is perfect for any grade in elementary school. There is a variety of activities for all grades! I am looking forward to next year when I purchase and use: Mallet Madness Strikes Again!
Here is a photo of my set up:
Looking for a way to teach a couple major compositions to your students? Well, I teach Peter and the Wolf by Prokofiev and Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saens. I use a book, CD and short movie for each one. Usually, students watch the movies first. This helps them imagine the story and learn the instruments and themes for the characters/animals.
I use Sesame Street’s Peter and the Wolf for my younger students. It ia funny and easy-to-understand. There are several different movies for the older students if you want to show one to them as well. After the movie, we talk about the different instruments and I see if they can recognize them by sight. Older students by sight and sound. Also with upper grades we discuss motif.
For Carnival of the Animals, I use Bugs and Daffy’s Carnival of the Animals. There are a few other “less interesting” movies that I have found, but Looney Tunes is fun for the kids and they can recognize the songs quick after watching it. The only problem I have with it is that back in Saint-Saens day, he named the wild mules jackasses. That song is very short and I just skip through it on the movie and give the kids a little explanation of why we are doing that – words can have a good meaning and bad meaning, a long time ago this word just had a good meaning… blah blah blah.
Anyways, if you have any other great ways to teach these compositions, let me know! I know there are worksheets and activity packets, but I haven’t purchased one of those yet.