Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Copiable Dance for Primary Grades

"Dance" is part of the Arts curriculum and this tends to be a problem for many of us teachers!
But you can simplify things for yourself when you remember that children love to sing and move. All you need to do is put them together!

In the primary grades, the best approach is to teach a song with movement in the lyrics.

The children need to learn the song well so that they can sing as they perform the movements.

They will enjoy themselves and experience a feeling of accomplishment at the same time. And you, as the teacher, will be teaching "dance" painlessly!

The following is a song my grade one students loved. The second page explains the movements along with diagrams.

Click on each image to enlarge and print.

Shake them Simmons Down sheet music
Shake them Simmons Down

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Routines, routines, routines!

The most important thing at the beginning of the school year is not the curriculum!

Rather, it is training your class that there is a specific routine and process for everything.

The first six weeks of grade one need to focus on classroom routines as well as language and math.

Students who know how the day will unfold feel secure and ready to learn.

Make singing a regular routine. Beginning regular music classes at this time is very important.

Use a picture book to introduce a new lesson. The picture book may be based on fact or fiction. This approach settles the students and focuses their attention.

Gradually introduce science, social studies and health. Use the students’ experiences as the foundation for beginning these subjects:

e.g.: Begin science in the earth and space strand by studying the changing seasons.
Begin social studies with “Me”.
Begin health with nutrition, using a harvest and Thanksgiving theme.
The story of “The Little Red Hen” is a great story to use to introduce
the cereals and grains food group.

Any time lost at the beginning will be quickly recovered because the students will know and understand the expectations in the classroom.