Sunday, July 28, 2013

Singing Tips Posters for Choir

I've been searching for some sort of poster to display in my room to help my choir remember the fundamentals. I couldn't find exactly what I wanted to I decided to make it.

There are 7 posters in all that include basic singing tips such as breathing, posture, performing, listening, and being positive and prepared. Here are a few examples.

You can download the PDF HERE

The borders are not my own creation. I found them for free on from the following stores:
Digital Swirls Creations
Teacher Clipart
The 3am Teacher
Lovin Lit
Wild About 5th
Graphics from the Pond

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Also, I found a great freebie on Pinterest today from These signs look very helpful so I simply downloaded them and put them into a PDF to make them easier to print. These are not my own creation.

Download the PDF HERE

Sunday, July 21, 2013


Summer is winding down and I'm really excited to share something I've been working on this summer.

In late April/early May, I was able to order a class set of ukuleles! This is something I thought 7th grade students would really enjoy. That being said, I had never taught ukulele so I faced the task of creating a curriculum. I want to share resources I've created and those that I've found.

Resources from the Web
Kiwi Ukulele - I found this site on the web. It includes a great chord chart, chord diagram clipart and a great teacher resource pdf.

Ukulele Hunt - Awesome site with chords for popular songs, tutorials and tab.

Ukulele in the Classroom - Lots of FREE stuff including chord diagrams (poster size), music, flashcards, quizzes, and a cute poster of a little chihuahua playing a uke.

Cathy's Chords - Lots of ukulele songs with chords

Ukulele Tricks - Links to great video tutorials, especially one on strumming.

Ukulele Notebook 
I used the above resources to create a ukulele notebook for my students full of info on the uke, a chord chart and songs with chords and tab. Finding resources and hunting through them was a daunting task. If you would rather have my ukulele notebook, click here!

Course Syllabus and Loan Agreement
 I am so protective over these new instruments that I included a syllabus with all my expectations and an instrument loan agreement. This is something so new at our school that I figured, "better safe, than sorry."
Here is a link to my syllabus and loan agreement.

Beginning Ukulele Lesson
I created a beginning ukulele lesson (Smart Notebook file), including history of the uke, parts of the uke, names of the strings, information on tuning, strumming, and how to read chords and tab. If you would like a copy, comment and I will email you!

Pinterest Hint
I saw the "Ukulele by Dot" post at Treble in the Classroom and realized that is basically a must! I only have my 7th graders for a semester so I need all the time savers I can get!

Storing the Ukuleles
My dad and I designed and built this cart for the ukuleles!

I also have a ukulele bulletin board to put up, including my student expectations and chord diagrams. As soon as I'm able to work in my classroom, I'll add pictures of that, too.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Choir Basic Training

I just found out that this year, I have a choir class during school! I'm so excited.

Last year was definitely a learning experience with choir. I really didn't know what to expect as far as their abilities. This year, I am going to hit the basics and try to build fundamental skills, especially with new choir members coming. I was already working on a choir resource to help with sight singing skills when I found out about the class. This PDF is a version of my Choir Basic Training presentation.

In my version, the first slides are about student expectations, dress code, attendance policy, etc. I took those out for the shared version because everyone does something different. I left the basics of breathing, posture, rhythm review, rhythm patterns, warm ups and sight singing examples.

Get the presentation here.

I also added the PDF of sight singing examples. I plan to work on these at each rehearsal and include them in our warm up. Get the PDF here.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Che Che Kooley

I am currently working on a 3rd grade unit for world music. I found this lesson last night and had to share it!

There is also powerpoint that goes along with this lesson (as you saw in the video). Here is a link!

Recorder Fundamentals and Exercises

After teaching a year of recorder, I learned alot! My 4th graders exceeded my expectations with the amount of skills they mastered. 5th grade left more to be desired.

This year is going to be a little different as far as scheduling. We will only have half the group of 5th, 6th and 7th graders for a semester. After the semester is over, the classes will switch and I will have the other half. That being said, my recorder plans had to change.

This year, I created a powerpoint to guide my beginning recorder teaching. This has all the basics and fundamentals written out with exercises for the first notes, B, A, and G.

I didn't include songs because we have a class set of recorder method books and the kids are ordering a Recorder Karate book for themselves this year. Using stands and reading from a method book was a huge hit last year! I had numerous requests for a take home copy of the book.

As always, I uploaded the Powerpoints to Google Docs. Simply click the link below to open Google Docs and under File (within the Docs window) select download. Then you have a copy on your computer.

Beginning Recorder Powerpoint

I also created a Year 2 powerpoint with the rest of the notes and a C scale. I will probably use this during the fourth grade, but I designed it with 5th graders in mind. Again, I didn't include songs because we use the method book.

Recorder Year 2