Upper elementary students can be some of the toughest audiences. They are too cool for you, don’t like sticking out, and definitely are NOT singing that at an audible volume for you (*cue intense side eye*). If you are like me and abide by the rule that they have to be singing in order to the play the game, “and I won’t help you out since I don’t get to play”, then these are PERFECT games for upper elementary!
Four white horses is a great for some tricky patterns. This has some Syncopa (Ti-Ta-Ti) patterns. Some of them have rests, so that’s perfect for internalized counting. It’s a great song for praticing. It’s also got some really good Low La & Low Sol movement, but also has some low ti if you are preparing that concept. There’s a great Ti-Re-Do movement that happens 3 times, so it’s perect if you are trying to isolate that pattern. The clapping game has just enough difficulty that your older students will eat it up and work to get it right.
This game is perfect for some kids who really just love the throw stuff. Of course, I keep the “underhand only and it must roll’ rule in effect!! This Farsi game has Tam-Ti patterns, and is in minor. It’s a gem and the lyrics are not difficult to learn. This is a fast game and everyone loves to dodge balls. Check this one out for sure!
Another foreign language song, this one is from Liberia. I love that this song is quick to learn even with a different language. Students won’t be struggling with the language and get to the game more quickly since there are only a few words in this song. Perfect for Fa and Syncopa (Ti-Ta-Ti) or eighth – quarter – eighth patterns, students will love this clapping game.
This one is sure to get them going because who doesn’t love a game of Marco Polo? Definitely have a chat about the rabbit being not-so-nice, but this is great for Fa and Tim-ka (dotted eighth-sixteenth).
This is my alltime favorite game with the kids. Moving walls, a pig and a farmer, they will be begging to play this again. This is perfect for Low Sol at the end of phrases, and (Tam-Ti) dotted quarter – eighth patterns.
Pro Tip 1: When you play the game, sing the song 3 times through to make it a little more fun (and give the farmer a little more time!) The first time sing VERY slow, and gradually get faster.
Pro Tip 2: Make the kids stay in the walls because there will always be at least one who wants to run around the grid the whole time.
I hope your stuents love these games as much as I do!! I’d love to hear how you use them! Before you go, check out this free download here with all of these songs and instructions.
I can’t wait to find out how you like these!