Face it, December activities in a school can throw a wrench in our plans. Even well planned teachers can be stuck with “what do I do nows”, “I don’t want to start a new concept”, or “half the class is missing because there was a party” problems. Whatever reason you need something to get you there, here is a big list of holiday activities for music class to help you keep students learning through the mad dash to break.

Nutcracker Play Along

This one is not just a play along, but something you could pull and put on a stage for a quick performance for younger students. Uncomplicated and easy patterns to follow and most students will have it down after only a few plays through it. Check it out here.

You can read more about the specifics here so you can teach it without a video!

Sugar Plum Fairy Ideas

Embrace the Nutcracker but instead of spending time on the entire ballet, focus on one character. The Sugar Plum Fairy is a great choice as she’s the most important dance element to the ballet. Here’s a post with some ways to focus on just her.

Get Creative

Embrace the holidays and let them do it on their own terms. This composing file has all you need to compose with how you approach the holidays. Includes religious Christmas, secular Christmas, Hanukkah, and winter composing options so you don’t have to second guess which file to buy. Check it out here.

If you would rather stick with the Nutcracker, this set uses words from The Nutcracker to create patterns. Check it out here.

If you are looking for more flexibility on how you have your students create, check out these sets. Include 3 different ways to compose – cut & paste, word banks, and cards to create ostinati.

Play Alongs

There are no shortage of play alongs for winter. Here’s a big list of winter and holiday play alongs for rhythm, boomwhackers, body percussion and more.

Short, Engaging Videos

Duke Ellington

Instead of the traditional version, explore the Duke Ellington version. This will be a really engaging way to include Nutcracker lessons with your older students.

You can listen to it on Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MihqGJ4PkY&list=PLEE9A9CF50F4E1576

This book is a great way to introduce it! (Affiliate link – I get a small kickback and it doesn’t change your price. No pressure!)

Concept Practice

These fun, interactive Ugly Sweater games are a hilarious way to practice reading solfege or rhythm concepts. Students click a sweater and read a pattern. If they are correct they get a point, but if they are wrong, they get stuck with the ugly sweater and lose a point! This is a fun game to play in teams! Check them out here.

I hope this has given you some serious ideas to get through the next few weeks no matter what your needs!

Melissa Stouffer-1

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