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This is an idea for teaching notes and chords with boomwhackers
Title – Boomwhackers – If You’re Happy
By – Rosemary Shaw
Primary Subject – Music
Secondary Subjects –
Grade Level – 3-4
Seat children in a Boomwhacker Circle, and pass out boomwhackers in diatonic order. (If there are 24 students, for example, the first three get low c, the next three d, and so on around the circle.)
Begin “If You’re Happy” by just playing the melody on a keyboard and asking students to clap when they think they should. Piece of cake, and they will all be so very pleased with themselves. Ask them next to sing the traditional “If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands” words.
Then, referring to a chart, which is on the board, ask them to sing “If you’re happy and you know it, play an A, and so on. If you use three keys, all students will get a chance to play.
Here is the chart:
1. A-B-G (key of G, modulate to C)
2. D-E-C (key of C, modulate to F)
3. G-A-F (key of F)
Once this is well learned, I teach chords, singing,
“if you’re happy and you know it play chord five”, and then one, and one again.
Only two keys are need for this, and they are (on the board):
1. five: CEG
one: FAC (key of F, modulate to C)
2. five: GBDF
Students really love this and ask for it again and again!
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