Students will learn about rhythm.
Main Curriculum Tie:
1st Grade - Content
Standard 1 Objective 3
Develop and use skills to communicate ideas, information, and feelings.
- Month-by-Month Poetry: September, October & November, Grades
PreK-2, by Marian Reiner; ISBN 0-590-37898-8
- Month-by-Month Poetry: December, January & February, Grades
PreK-2, by Marian Reiner; ISBN 0-590-37900-3
- Month-by-Month Poetry: March, April, May & June, Grades PreK-2,
by Marian Reiner; ISBN 0-590-37903-8
- Mother Goose Phonics, Grades K-2, by Deborah Schecter;
- Learning From Poems & Rhymes. Parent & Child, Vol. 12 No.
Neuman, S. B. (2004, November/December).
Background For Teachers:
Be familiar with the musical definition of “rhythm” as defined
UEN The Music Factory video segment on rhythm. Definition: Rhythm
is the oldest form of music. It encompasses the elements of beat or
pulse, accent, pattern and tempo.
Option: Teach this lesson as a follow up to a previous lesson
on rhythm in which you show the UEN video segment on rhythm.
Note: Use the syllables to create different rhythms of a name,
e.g., Q=quick; S=slow
Intended Learning Outcomes:
1. Demonstrate a positive learning attitude.
6. Communicate clearly in oral, artistic, written, and nonverbal form.
Invitation to Learn
Write the teacher’s name (Mrs./Ms./Mr. ________) on the board.
Clap a rhythm for the name. Model various ways to hear the rhythm
using body percussion (snapping, clapping, or stomping).
- Teach your choice of
poem to the students by having
them read and clap with you the natural rhythm of the words.
Scary things are seen.
Soon it will be
- Teach students how rhythm is notated using ‘sticks’ rather
notes (see example). Using the dry erase marker, draw the
notation for each word on the laminated poem by clapping the
rhythm one line at a time, then notating using ‘S=slow’ and ‘Q=quick’ notations.
how to read and perform by clapping the rhythm of
the ‘sticks’ notation. Teach the students the rhythm one line
time by clapping the rhythm, then have students repeat it.
- After you have
informally assessed the students’ ability and
understanding based on their clapping performance, provide them
with rhythm sticks.
- Demonstrate the correct way to use the sticks, then
ask for a
student volunteer to demonstrate to the whole class. Pass out the
sticks to a small group of students who will demonstrate as well.
While the students with the rhythm sticks are demonstrating,
allow the rest of the class to clap the rhythm to ensure
participation from all students.
- Continue with a series of demonstrations
using small groups of
students until all students have experienced the rhythm sticks.
- Pass out
rhythm sticks to all students. Under your direction, have
them practice the poem. Monitor each student’s performance.
You may want to have students perform for the class in small
groups, or have a performance contest between the groups.
- Refer again to
the teacher’s name. Model the rhythmic notation
of the name by clapping the rhythm. Choose some random names
(not names of your students). Model how to notate and perform
the various rhythms several more times.
- Instruct students to write their
own name, notate the rhythm, then
practice a way to perform it using snapping, clapping, or
- Pass out paper. Monitor the students as they write, notate,
- Introduce a shared writing activity
using the poem to replace
certain words with other words that rhyme. Let the students come
up with the words, even if they are nonsense words.
- Teach the same lesson using a different
poem and a new rhythm
Hint: Only introduce one new instrument at a time, modeling
specific rules and procedures for using that instrument.
- Students draw pictures
of items in the poem. Glue illustrations on
popsicle sticks or paint sticks to use in a performance.
- Students act out
the parts/characters in the poem as a whole class
or in small groups. They could also create an action or rhythmic
pattern for each word or phrase.
- Teach a nursery rhyme song and perform using
- Have students teach family members
about rhythm using pots,
pans, and spoons as instruments.
- As students are listening to music at home
or in a car, encourage
them to use their hands as rhythm instruments. Listen for and
find the beat in the music and/or the rhythm for the syllables in
- An informal observation assessment can be done during the lesson as the
students practice the rhythm of the poem and read the notations.
- Students notate the rhythm of their own name and perform the rhythm using
body percussion and/or instruments.
Rogers, N. (2003). Improving Students’ Literacy through the Use
of Rhythm and Rhyme.
Illinois. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 479865)
This research study focuses on first grade students who read below
grade level. It focuses on rhythm and rhyme to increase reading skills.
The students’ knowledge of letters and sounds improved, which increased
confidence in their reading ability.
Created Date :
Sep 21 2005 13:59 PM