Drum Circles include “free play” for exploration, improvisation, enjoying the groove! But having structured activities bring a lot of fun and satisfaction to the music making group.
One source that is very helpful is the Sound Shape Playbook. www.musicrhapsody.com
The activities are quick and easy to add for any type of drums, percussion, homemade instruments, kitchen music, etc.
1 2 Tie My Shoe – leader does one two, circle does words
Repeat with one side doing numbers, other side doing words
Repeat bass tone on numbers, rim tone for words
Play low drums verses high drums
Alabama Gal This activity is in the Sound Shape Play book, as well as the included CD. The free download in Lynn Kleiner’s Music Box also includes activity suggestions and free PowerPoint for classroom use too.
Ten Musicians Drumming – Play on the numbers and short solos make this exciting.
They played like this……….they played like that, they played with their friends, they played with their baby, they played in the kitchen, they played in the car, ten musicians drummmmmmming.
Video – During the pandemic, masked families enjoyed an outdoor event!
Listen to another rhythmic favorite from My Trip to the Mountains Book/CD, She’ll be Comin Round the Mtn.
For more on percussion favorites, see Lynn’s resources and training, musicrhapsody.com.
There is an order, a sequence of types of activities that will bring musical success. In the area of timing and singing, this is especially true if music is introduced at an early age. Goin’ on a Bike Ride is a delightful little activity for feeling the beat, hearing the rhythm and encouraging imaginative participation by easily creating new verses.
Here’s a couple ways we use the song to do this, depending on the ages and the setting of your classes.
Babies and Tots – adults alternate the child’s legs up and down, gently moving as each leg bends at the knew and straightens to the beat, as it would when riding a bike. Use the child’s name, Grandma, mommy, names of pets, puppets, etc, to create new verses of who is going along on the ride!
Preschool/K – Everyone stands in a large circle, holding on to the “Stretchy Band,” alternating hands while making the circular motion as if riding a bike. Teacher or Leader moves around the center, stopping on “who do you see?” The child sings who’s on the bike ride. (Imagination is welcome here! Ladybug? Dinosaur? Skunk?)
This adorable story book, Duck on a Bike, is a great way to give the children ideas of who may be riding on a bike!
The song and recording, Going on a Bike Ride is from the book/CD Kids Make Music, Babies Make Music Too!
To introduce the song, you may share this video with your students.