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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Music In Our Schools Month: 2 (more!) easy and engaging ideas

Music In Our Schools Month starts in just two days- can you believe it?!? I have always loved celebrating with special activities and advocacy projects that keep all the wonderful aspects of music education at the forefront of everyone's minds. I've shared lots of ideas for everything from in-class activities to bulletin boards and everything in between in the past- look for those posts at the end of this one- but today I've got a couple more ideas that I'll be using this year that you can easily implement this year too! Happy Music In Our Schools Month!

1. Guess the Musician bulletin board

This is not a new idea- Tracy from Mrs. King's Music Class has shared something similar here, as have several others- but this is my first year trying it out myself! The idea is to promote the idea that music is an important part of our upbringing and education, and that music becomes a part of our lives as adults in many different ways even when we aren't in a music-related career. I created a simple survey and printed out copies to give to every adult who works with our students- everyone from the superintendent to the custodians- and asked them to fill it out and return it to me. I then compiled their answers to create a bulletin board where students can guess which grownup is being described. I'll be adding a new clue each day in March, and the principal will be reading the clue on the morning announcements. At the end of the day, I'll add the answer to the bottom of the sheet! I was thrilled with the response I got- I think keeping the survey short and easy was key- and I can't wait to share these with the school.

If you want to see the super-simple templates I used for the survey and bulletin board, here they are- once my bulletin board is completely put together I'll be sure to share a photo as well!


2. Music suggestion box

I threw this in at the last minute last year and ended up loving it, so I'll be making it an official part of our celebration this year 😉 I got a cardboard box, covered the top in construction paper, cut a slit in the side, and set out some slips of paper and a pencil for people to write down suggestions for songs that they wanted to hear on the morning announcements. Each day in March we played one of the suggestions over the speakers in the morning, and I was amazed at how excited the entire school community- students, teachers, and parents- got over the chance to share their favorite songs from all different genres! It was a great way to make sure we were starting each day with music as well.

Last year's box was thrown together in 15 minutes on a spur of the moment idea, so hopefully this year's suggestion box will look a bit more polished, but here's how I set it up last year:

I'll still be including my in-class activities, like the Rhythm Battle and Disco Duel, as part of our celebrations. Those are really the best part of Music In Our Schools Month for me and for my students! If you haven't already, be sure to check out my previous posts on MIOSM for even more ideas:

No matter how you choose to celebrate, I hope you and your students can take the time to celebrate the wonderful world of music together- it's so important to remind ourselves of the pure joy of music making, especially at this time of year when patience starts to dwindle! What other ways do you recognize Music In Our Schools Month? Let's hear your ideas in the comments below!

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