Movement in the Classroom and Teaching Music

Movement in the Classroom
TED 387 Music Methods
Dr. Steve Broskoske
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PA Standards for
Arts & Humanities
• 9.1 Know and use the elements and principles of
each art form to create works in the arts and
– Elements
• Dance: energy/force • space • time
• Music: duration • intensity • pitch • timbre
– Principles:
• Dance: choreography • form • genre •
improvisation • style • technique
• Music: composition • form • genre • harmony •
rhythm • texture
Benefits of Movement
in the Classroom
• Develop and stimulate imagination.
• Understand melody, rhythm, form, harmony,
texture, tempo, and dynamics.
• Discover how the body can be used to create
images, feelings, and moods.
• Strengthen coordination of gross and fine motor
• Develop better awareness of balance, spatial
relationships, and self-image.
Preparing Environment
• Ensure classroom is free of obstacles.
– Move desks against walls if needed. Goals
are safety & to not inhibit freedom.
• Assign each child a “personal space” for
safe movement.
• Establish and enforce rules for these
Movement is Natural
• Children are naturally interested in
movement. To introduce movement,
choose images students already know and
have them act them out.
– Bird flying, walking like a particular familiar
animal, walking on hot ground, frogs hopping,
a soldier marching.
• You could also string a sequence of
movements together into a story.
Categories of Movement
1. Locomotor: Involve students moving
from one place to another.
– Walking, running, hopping, leaping,
gallopping (walking & leaping), and skipping
(walking & hopping).
2. Nonlocomotor: Students perform these
movements from a stationary position (no
Five Brown Buns
Five brown buns in a bakery
Five brown buns with sugar
on the top.
Along came a man with a
penny in his hand,
Took one bun and away he
Last verse: Slowly sing “no
brown buns” as everyone
cries. Speed up when man
runs away.
Nonlocomotor: Pitch
Where my hair grows
On my head
Past my nose
Past my tummy
Up on me
Now he’s climbing
Freddie Flea
On the ground is
Start here!
On my head is
Freddie Flea
Now he’s climbing
Down on me
Past my tummy
Past my knee
On the ground
“Take that you flea!”
Locomotor: Circle Games
• During each verse, act out movements
specified by lyrics.
– Right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot,
whole self, etc.
Hokey Pokey
Locomotor: Circle Games
• Verses: Act out movements specified by
– Right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot,
whole self.
• Chorus: Skip around the circle, hand in
Looby Loo
Locomotor: Circle Games
• During the chorus:
Students move
around the circle,
hand in hand.
• During the verses:
Stop and act out the
chores described in
the lyrics.
List of Chores
Wash our clothes.
Iron our clothes.
Sew our clothes.
Sweep our floors.
Scrub our floors.
Bake our bread.
Go to church.
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Establish personal space:
– Have students stand with their arms extended
out to their sides. Turn around in a circle while
the teacher explains that this is their personal
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Establish personal space:
– Ask children to pretend to blow up a large
bubble and get inside. Bubble represents their
personal space.
– Tell children to act as though they are floating
around the room trying to fill up the “elephant
holes” in the classroom. (Get children to move
around freely without colliding into others.)
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Experiment with walking motion:
– Tap a steady drum beat.
– As you tap a drum to a steady beat, walk
children around an area until you stop the
– Lead children by repeating the movements
you want them to follow.
– Examples: tiptoeing, running, galloping, etc.
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Experimenting with movement:
– When the music starts, lead the children by
swinging your arms, tapping your toes,
bobbing your head, and shaking your hips.
– Start and stop music periodically. Every time
the music starts, add a new twist, bounce, or
turn to get the children moving.
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Use props:
– Make streamers out of crepe paper tied onto
wooden dowels.
– Use scarves or ribbons.
– Demonstrate movement:
Wave props high and low.
Sway back and forth.
Move in circles.
Move prop behind your back.
Ask children for suggestions.
Introducing Movement in
Early Childhood
• Hold a parade:
– Give children instruments (purchased or
– Lead a parade of musical children around the
playground or classroom.
– Let individual children lead the parade as well.
• Use movement to start the day or reenergize young learners:
– Lead a series of fun stretches.
– Do windmills with your arms.
– Announce different movements:
• Reach for the sky, tickle your toes, twirl like a top,
sway like a tree, rock back and forth like a rocking
Dance Songs
• Chicken Dance
• Macarena
Circle Dances
• Suitable for 2nd through 4th grades.
• Serve as a transition from elementary to
more complex dances performed by
students in upper grades.
• Dances are performed in a circle, and the
lyrics suggest what movements to
Make sure students know a song well
before learning to dance to the song.
Circle Dance
Old Brass Wagon
1. Circle to the left, old brass wagon.
Circle to the left, old brass wagon.
Circle to the left, old brass wagon.
You’re the one, my darling.
2. Circle to the right…
3. Everybody in…
4. Everybody out…
Folk Dances
Couples do not
have to be boygirl in K-6.
• 3 types:
– Circle dances:
Dancers are in 1 large
or 2 concentric circles.
– Line dances: Couples
come together in 2
facing lines.
– Square dances:
Involves 4 couples.
Set Formation for line & square
Folk dances allow students a nonthreatening way
to explore different cultures, including our own.
Folk Dance
Oh, Suzanna
Girls forward 4 steps
Girls back 4 steps
Boys forward 4 steps
Boys back 4 steps
Girls forward 4 steps
Girls back 4 steps
Boys forward 4 steps
Boys back 4 steps
Swing partners to right (8
Swing partners to left
(8 counts)
• Dance and movement in the classroom
energizes learners, and fulfills PA
academic standards.
• There are many benefits to using
movement/dance in the classroom.
• Movement can be locomotor or
• Dance can be as simple as a circle dance,
or more complex as a line dance.

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