- Recording project - add layers of tracks to their songs, and have a blast arranging with different instruments.
- Research music history - illustrate, write a book report on a composer, song, or musical period.
- Musical pen-pals - have students write each other & share their recorded songs via mp3s.
- Studio music project book - make a collection of student-chosen projects to view
- Score a "film" clip - set music to a scene from a favorite film, or slideshow of photos.
- World music map - put a pin in a map to show where everyone's songs are from!
- FREE DOWNLOAD The "Challenge Wheel" - wheel of fortune type game, with music challenges in each pie! I created this game because it is fun to spin a wheel :) Come up with challenges for the students on-the-spot based on their level.
- FREE DOWNLOAD "SUMMER BINGO" - a different weekly challenge for a lively summer piano studio
Have you tried playing scales to cool rock backing tracks or bossa nova style accompaniments? It is really fun.
Here is a Youtube playlist I made for my students to make practicing scales more fun. Once they know a scale, we improvise using the scale. Jazz, blues, pop, or free improv - have fun! That's what making music is all about after all!
For more advanced improv, check out this blog post on Jazz Advice.com (20 things every improvisor should know) love it!
Try different types of accompanying, such as Contra-dance music to improvise with chords and scales.
Playlists of Fun Songs
SONGS for beginning piano students: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzYAnnfzO7k-_-YHqLI59yVJffQLGFOUp
VIDEOS for KIDS songs: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzYAnnfzO7k9XVTsjVqBGrg2nOcBgsBq5
Transcribe pop songs - Try transcribing a popular song or video game song for more fun and get students practicing a song they LOVE! Cascade Method has awesome arrangements of simplified pop songs if you are unfamiliar with transcribing.
"Library" - have students "check-out" music from your library with their "music library cards" it's fun!
Composing - my creative students are especially motivated when they are free to make their own music - just pick up some manuscript paper for them!
Tighten up ship with this weekly Practice Report - hold students & parents accountable! I offer a prize for every 4 weeks students are prepared in-a-row.
For summer, I do 10 weeks and a prize at the end! Collect stickers as you go.
For prizes, I like The Music Stand.com or I'll pick up candy or small school supplies from Target, wrap them up, and put them in a grab bag.
I also love these 100 days of practice sheets from Cascade Music!
Felt board - Make a felt-board and touch each note as you learn it!
Musical Go-Fish - Learn Treble CDEFG successfully with this fun game focusing on 3-note phrases!
CDEFG Bracelets - Give your students a reward bracelet once they master Treble CDEFG
NOTEWORKS APP - download this awesome game on your phone or iPad