I use the term: “bubbles” to describe when students use personal space.
We pretend to turn on our bubbles around our bodies by snapping above our heads. When I play music or sing, students may move around the room with their bubbles on, but they may not TALK or TOUCH anyone or anything. If they do, their bubble pops, and they are out. In the younger grades, I often do bubbles the last few minutes of the lessons. Here are some songs we use with bubbles.
Another use for bubbles is for steady beat. I play the keyboard at different tempi while students put the beat in their feet.
We use it in 1st grade for “beat” vs. “no beat.” When I play something with a beat, they must stand still and bounce. When I play something without a beat, they must move around the room with fluid movements.
We do it in Kindergarten with loud and soft. I play Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever with my hand on the volume to make the dynamics more pronounced. Students march when they hear loud and stand still and bounce when they hear soft.
- For Kindergarten long and short sounds, students make long and short steps to the music.
- In the 1st and 2nd grade Nutcracker units, we dance in bubbles to the different pieces.
- Students can walk in bubbles to demonstrate FORM. For instance: they must change the way they walk for Section B. Or sometimes I hand each student a card with A on one side and B on the other. They hold up which section is playing while they walk to the music.
I highly recommend bubbles! In addition to being a great way to experience music kinesthetically, the kids love it!