Music can play such an important part in the classroom. It helps with transition times, behavior management, classroom management, and can instantly change the mood of students (and teachers!). While many teachers bring in their own music, it can get expensive to fund a class music library. Besides asking the music teacher to borrow her CDs, there are other ways that you can stock your classroom with fun, kid-appropriate music that helps with all aspects of classroom life. So, break out your iPod, turn on your computer, and plug in your CD player for more music fun with the following resource ideas.
5 Music Resources for the Classroom
This free music app for most mobile and tablet devices can be programmed to play everything from holiday music to classical music to every genre of music in between. Hook your phone or music player up to external speakers, click on the music channel of your choice, and you will be able to share all different styles of music with your students. This is also a great way to expose children to music from around the world.
YouTube may not be the first place you think of going for classroom music, but any song you could possibly think of can be found on YouTube. Search for your favorite children’s song and chances are that you will be able to find it. There are also great music and movement videos that make for fun and effective brain breaks. Some series you might want to check out include the Schoolhouse Rock videos and Sesame Street. As always, preview YouTube videos before showing them to your class to make sure that they are appropriate.
Your local library or school library may have a collection of old tapes, records and CDs that you can borrow free of charge. It is an excellent and often forgotten resource as we find ourselves in a digital age. One great way to engage students in the music is to check out the same song on as many different mediums as you can find. Students can then compare and contrast the sound quality and musical texture of the various recordings. It gives them an opportunity to hear how music has evolved throughout the years.
This site lists a huge collection of great songs that you can use in your classroom or with the school chorus. There are lyrics and song snippets to most of the songs, but it does require you to purchase the song to hear it all. The lyrics alone are of great benefit and can be used in lessons to discuss rhyming words, vocabulary and other language ideas. Looking for math concept songs? This site has them! Multiplication songs are especially helpful for students who have trouble remembering their facts.
Another pay-for-use site, iTunes is Apple’s giant music library. You can download songs to your iPod, iPhone, iPad or computer. Since some schools may have iTunes blocked on school computers, you may need to download music ahead of time to create your own holiday music collection. Amazon’s music service, as well as Google Play’s music are options for Android users.
While music may be an investment that you make for your class, it is one that will last throughout your teaching career. It can mean the difference between easy transitions and tough ones. It can mean enthusiastic and effective brain breaks, or frustrated students throughout the day. Music can transform the mood and energy in your classroom in a few simple beats. And a positive, energetic, on-task classroom is something that every teacher longs to have.
What are some of your favorite songs and song resources for the classroom? Share them with us below!