3rd Grade Rhythm Activity

1. Begin with echoing rhythms. I say rhythms (in 4/4), they echo rhythms. Instead of clapping like I usually do, I ask students to pantomime playing alternating mallets in the air. For half notes, they only play once and wait for the instrument to ring. (This is a tricky concept sometimes!)

2. Do this form:

  • Me: “ta-a ti-ti ta”
  • Students: “ta-a ti-ti ta”
  • Me: “ta-a ti-ti ta”
  • Students: “ta-a ti-ti ta”
  • All say together: Listen to the rhythm now. To the right, we all know how.

Repeat form of above with new rhythm:

  • Me: I say rhythm
  • Students: Echo rhythm
  • Me: I say rhythm
  • Students: Echo rhythm
  • All say together: Listen to the rhythm now. To the right, we all know how.

3. After practicing this a few times, have students stand in a circle on the floor. Put at least 3 mallet percussion instruments equidistant from each other in front of 3 of the students. I have three:

  • temple blocks
  • tubano
  • suspended cymbal

The kids get excited about playing these, because since I only have one of each, we hardly ever get to use them.

 

Do the form above – students without an instrument pantomime alternate mallets, and students with instruments in front of them will actually pick up the mallets and play.

When everyone says: “Listen to the rhythm now. To the right, we all know how,” all students step once to the right. 3 different students now pick up mallets.

Continue until all students have played all 3 instruments.


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2 thoughts on “3rd Grade Rhythm Activity”

  1. Thanks so much for posting all your ideas! I’m a music teacher in Belo Horizonte, Brazil and I’m finding your posts very helpful. Keep it up!

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