Along with many others (as evidenced by the many pins on Pinterest related to the topic), our district has adopted the "recorder karate" curriculum to use with our 3rd graders in general music class. I have my own opinions about the merits and drawbacks of the curriculum, but today I want to talk about an idea I stumbled on last year to keep up with all the sheets of music for students to use when they are working on earning their belts (if you don't know about the program, you can read about it here). I used to just keep a file folder with each of the songs in belt order, and when a student passed a belt I would pull out the next song and hand it to them. But that takes up precious time when I could be listening to or helping another student, and it means I have to keep up with a LOT of papers! Enter my new system:
I have this big magnetic chalk board at the back of my room, so I
I really like this system because the students can see where they are in the belt rankings, and they can easily go and get their next paper when they pass a belt without me getting it out for them. It is also something colorful to have on the walls, and the younger students always ask me what it is for (and I tell them that they can find out in 3rd grade, which just infuriates them and makes them want to ask the 3rd graders what they are doing!).
I was also able to put the recorder fingering charts up next to the belt songs. I started with just B, A, and G and added more as students started working on higher belts with more notes in them. If you want the same fingering chart posters, you can find them here from Marti Chandler.
I have plans to spiffy these up a bit to make it pretty, but I love the basic idea of hanging the envelopes and labeling them by belt color. It has definitely made my life easier while we are doing the program in class!
Do you have any tricks for keeping up with all the sheet music for recorder karate? Share your tips in the comments!