Halloween is one of my favorite holidays because of all the “spooky” music you can use in your classroom! Here are some “spooktacular” resources brought to you by members of the Music Crew!
One of my favorite pieces to study in October is “In the Hall of Mountain King” because it clearly demonstrates a crescendo and accelerando and also serves as an excellent piece to work on the half note! In my Listening Activities and Assessments, I include a composer biography for the teacher and student worksheet, animated listening map and worksheet, instrument play along activity, rhythm performance assessment, and a rhythm composition assessment. I have also included seven interactive notebook pages that coincide with the other assessments in the set. Check out this video to see everything this set has to offer!
Linda Seamons from Floating Down the River has a great sound story set that accompanies the book, The Little Old Lady Who Wasn’t Afraid of Anything. It includes large story-telling pieces and words for the teacher as well as a smaller set for students to use individually or in centers. What a fantastic way to reinforce literacy in the music classroom! It also has a worksheet for matching rhyming words and ideas for making the book into a sound story!
Kelly Parrish from Rhythmically Yours offers a great Autumn Storytime Bundle that includes Skin and Bones and Five Little Pumpkins. The Skin and Bones PowerPoint has the words to the song but the “oos” are notated on the staff. I especially love the black and white depiction of the story using staff paper – it is a nice, “spooky” touch! The Five Little Pumpkins PowerPoint is an animated read along and I know my students love watching the pumpkins roll off the gate at the end! Both of these are staples during the month of October.
Melissa Stouffer from Mrs. Stouffer’s Music Room has a fun Halloween Composing set that offers options for all ages to try their hand at composing. It includes pages to draw or paste pictures to compose, write and draw pictures to compose, write words to match rhythms, blank composition pages for teacher directions, pictures with and without rhythms, and dice with Halloween items or with rhythmic notation! Students will love trying their hand at composing with the many options included in this pack!
If you are like me, October leads to unwanted sickness because of the changing seasons. I often battle laryngitis at the time of year. Jane Lee from SillyOMusic offers Halloween Music Activities that are perfect for those days you need vocal rest or have to be out of the classroom. Her pack includes a spinner game, chant composition, Halloween sounds activity, listening glyph for “In the Hall of Mountain King,” color by note worksheets, note drawing practice, dynamic review, rhythm practice, Five Little Pumpkins color page, and word search! It is an awesome set to leave for a substitute because the students are working on important skills.
Are you looking for a way to incorporate Orff instruments into your October plans? Look no further than Pass the Cauldron: A Passing Game with Orff Instruments from Nancy Otto at The Rested Musician. This is a fun activity that involves singing, passing on the beat, and playing a variety of instruments. Students pass a cauldron filled with cards giving them directions, such as “play the bass xylophone” or “take someone’s instrument.” All instrumental parts are included as well as blank cards for you to personalize the activity. The song is easy to teach and the activity is a perfect way to include instruments in your activities!
Centers are a fantastic way for students to practice skills independent of the teacher in a group setting. Stacie Bates from The Bates Clef has a fun set of Halloween Centers! The set includes Alpha-Note Matchup, Time Sign Creations, Symbol Matching, and Orchestra Sorting. Alpha-Note Matchup allows students to use their knowledge of the treble and bass clef notes as they match notes to the character with the corresponding letter. Time Sign Creations is all about rhythmic composition – rhythm cards and brooms to use as bar lines are included. Symbol Matching is a basic memory game that can also be played as Go Fish, Old Maid, or used as a relay race. Orchestra Sorting tests students’ knowledge of instrument families. What a fun way for students to work together on music fundamentals!
Christine Skog from Elementary Etudes offers another great literacy reinforcement tool with her Over in the Hollow Vocal Explorations! The set includes a lesson plan for the teacher, 13 slides with vocal explorations notated that correspond with the story, 13 slides without lines drawn so teachers or students can create their own pathways, and 13 student worksheets that allow them to compose their own vocal exploration. Also included in the pack is the music to “Over in the Meadow” because you can sing the words in Over in the Hollow to the same tune – how creative!