6 Ways to Make Learning Fun
March is Music in Our School Month, and it is almost half way over. To celebrate all things music, I have another FREEBIE for you to download today. But, before we get to the FREEBIE, I am going to share with you how I use it in my own classroom.
These Music Term Cards, are a resource that I created long before I became a seller on Teachers Pay Teachers. I created the Term Cards after attending a workshop on Kagan Cooperative Learning. It was one of those workshops where I had a “light bulb” moment. I enjoyed the workshop, the ideas and was immediately thinking of ways I could use this type of learning in my classroom.
This little resource has endless possibilities on how you can use them in your classroom. The best thing about them, they are FREE for you to download! Below is a description of how I use them in my classes, from Years 7-12.
I use these games after teaching the music terms in the set to the class. I find that even though I have “taught” the terms, the terms don’t seem to sink in until the students have had a go at these activities. These activities are great for building class cohesion, small group cohesion and, more importantly, students don’t realise that they are learning when they are having so much fun and talking to each other and not just listening to the teacher!
There are a couple of ways for you to create them as a reusable resource. The first way is to print, cut out so that they are in strips with the question and answer on one strip. Then fold them in half and laminate for durability. The end product has the question on one side and the answer on the other. I have 6 sets like this in my class room for use with my classes. I print each set onto a different coloured piece of paper – easier to separate when they get mixed up! I store them in a sandwich size ziplock bag, then put them together in a plastic folder which is turn stored in a clop folder in my room.
The second way to have them as a resource is to print and cut up the questions and answers as separate cards, then laminate as before. Again, I have 6 different coloured sets, and I store them as I do with the other set. Having the cards this way just allows for different cooperative learning to be done with them.
Fan and Pick
This is best done with the cards with the question and answer on each side. In a small group or pair, distribute the set of cards evenly to each person. The first person asks the question to the next person, if they get it right everyone cheers and the question goes into the pile in the middle of the group. If they get it wrong the “asker” gives them the answer and immediately asks the question again, but after the responder gets it right the questioner places the card at the back of their pile. This way, when the question comes to be asked again, the answer should be correct. Keep going around the group asking questions and answering until all cards are in the middle of the table. With this set of 65 questions, it can take up to an hour to play this game.
Inside Outside Circle
Have the students stand in concentric circles facing each other, everyone should have a partner. Hand out the cards to each person. The teacher decides who asks first – inside/outside. The students ask each the question, and as before if they get a wrong answer – the correct one is given and the question is immediately asked again. Praise each other for getting the question right, swap cards, then one of the circles moves one place to their right/left – under the teacher’s instructions. Repeat this process until students are back to their starting partner. This can take up to a whole lesson, depending on the number of students you have in the class.
Mix, Freeze, Group
This works best with a space that you can move around in. Hand out the cards you want the students to use. Have signs up around the room with each of the Concepts of Music displayed OR ask students to find other group members based on the concepts without the concepts being displayed. While the music plays, students move around the room and swap their cards. When the music stops, students freeze, then they move to their appropriate group per the card in their hand. The newly formed group looks at each of the cards and checks if each group member should belong, if there is a group member that shouldn’t be there the group should try and find the correct group for the person and then they move to the group. Start again – mix, freeze, group. This can be played for as long or as little as you want – no time limits.
Using the question/answer cards distribute the cards evenly to each group member. Each person will need a whiteboard to write answers on. Taking turns, students ask a question and the other group members write their answers down on the whiteboard and show to each other. The person asking the question then gives the correct answer and they check if they are right. Next student asks a question, keep repeating. This will take a whole lesson to complete, depending on the number of questions you give your students.
This works best with the cards that have the questions and answers separately. In small groups the students place all the cards right side up in the space. As a group, they look for the correct pairs – question and answer. I like to get my students to also categorise their matches into the different Concepts of Music as they go. This usually takes a lesson to complete.
This works best with the cards that have the questions and answers separately. In small groups the students place all the cards upside down in the space. Each member of the group takes turns flipping two cards – if the cards match the student keeps the pair and can flip again. If the cards don’t match, the student flips them back over and the next person has their turn. For this game, it can take a long time for students to play. I would also suggest that you use this after the students have had a go at a couple of the other games mentioned previously!
Link to the Music Terms cards here.
Until next time
Julia from Jooya