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This Music Lesson/Game is on Body Rhythm
PreK, K, 1
By – Kathleen Yager
This lesson is perfect for teaching primary grades about the value of ti, tah and toh before they are ready to read.
- Have your students stand.
- Have them step to a slow beat saying “toh, toh” several times. This should be the value of a half note.
- Next, they should tap their thighs to what should equal a quarter note, and say “tah, tah, tah, tah”.
- Finally, have them clap their hands to “ti, ti, ti, ti” at what should be the speed of an eighth note.
- Mix and match patterns of eighths, quarters and half notes with the appropriate step, tap or clap. For example: step- step-tap-tap-tap-tap, clap-clap-clap-clap is half-half- quarter-quarter-quarter-quarter-eighth-eighth-eighth-eighth.
By the time my students are ready to read the rhythms, they are familiar with the patterns and the length of time each note is held.
Evaluation occurs as you notice how well each student is doing keeping a steady beat and following my lead. I often preface each set with “Simon Says…” and it sets the tempo and makes the game flow more easily. My younger students love it and the older ones occasionally want to play it. We move at faster tempos and as they gain in expertise, I occasionally let a student be the “leader” and observe.
This game can be adapted to special needs students by using whatever body parts they are able to move. It could be blinking to a beat or clicking their tongues to a beat. Get creative and have fun!