have you been wanting to weave pop songs into your music lessons, to bridge the gap between what students have been learning in music class, and what they hear on the radio? there are many reasons to use pop music in your music classroom, like the reasons listed here. when i find a song that i’m thinking about using, i always look up the lyrics to make sure they are school appropriate. a simple way to include pop music in your music lessons is with a movement activity. i typically do a beat motion (i.e. if students are comfortable keeping the beat, about halfway through the song, i ask for volunteers to lead the beat motions. students do each beat motion for 16 beats while listening to a song, then they do the beat motions for 8, then 4, then 2, then 1, so that each time they half the amount of the beat motions.
students can suggest new beat motions, so they have voice and choice, and you can do it again! as a kodály-inspired teacher, i love to pull concepts from pop songs, just like i would with a folk song. when i find a song that i like, i try to figure out the solfa or the rhythm as i’m listening to see if it might work for a concept. you can also order the sheet music on a site such as sheet music direct, so you can visually see which solfa and/or rhythm might be taught with the song. if your students play ukulele or guitar, you can look up the chords for the song and have them learn it on one of those instruments! some songs will need a capo, or will need to be played without the recording, as the tutorial is in one key and the song is in another. here’s a great tutorial for “try everything” by shakira: another great way to use a pop song in your music classroom is to have students analyze the lyrics. another fun way to incorporate pop music into your lessons is to have students learn the song on barred instruments.
i still believe that it’s very important to use folk music and music of the masters. i think the elephant in the room is that many people think that all pop music is bad. yes, we can argue that pop music is like junk food and they get enough on the radio or on their ipods, but to be relevant, shouldn’t we have them listen to a little pop music? after considering the reasons why i wanted to include pop music more, and why creating lessons using pop music is tricky, i have come up with a few ideas over the last couple of years that have worked for me and my students. here are a few ideas to get started on your journey: if you can find a pop song that has a steady beat, you could play a game called “follow me.” simply do the same motion for 8 beats and have students mirror you.
so far, i have tried the songs “miracle” (i kind of had to try that one! my name is ryan, and i spent 21 years in the navy band as a trombonist, and now i am pursuing a master of arts in teaching, music education. after they get a chance to engage with the music, i would have an open discussion of how sections sound different, feel different, and why – and continue to unravel how musical form works etc. there are a few secular songs i plan to do on the concert. some of the songs we are doing include: “can’t stop this feeling,” “fireflies,” and a few more.
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popular music lesson plans, k-5 you’ll find plenty of activities to keep your students interested and engaged while they sing songs, play instruments, pop music lesson plans and worksheets from thousands of teacher-reviewed resources to help you inspire students learning. looking for ideas on incorporating pop music into your music lessons? wanting to teach more relevant music? in this blog post, i detail five ways to bring, pop music lesson plans, free music lesson plans, music lesson plan example, lesson plans for music teachers, elementary music lesson plans free, online music lesson plans, 5th grade music lesson plans pdf, music lesson plans middle school, music lesson plans for kindergarten, music lesson plan for grade 3. how do you plan a music lesson? what are the examples of classroom games and activities for teaching music? how do you make a music class interesting? what are learning activities in a lesson plan?
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