Elementary music bean bag activities are just what you need if you’re looking to keep engagement high. I’m sharing interactive games and activities that have students singing, playing, and moving using bean bags.
SECTIONS IN THE VIDEO
- [1:01] Easy Warm UP Bean Bag Game
- [2:00] Grizzly Bear Bean Bag Game
- [5:08] Introduce and Teach How to Play with Bean Bags “Hello Song” Freebie
- [5:57] Upper Elementary Bean Bag Games for Music Class Learning and Assessment
- [7:19] Old Mac Donald Bean Bag Game
- [10:10] The Farmer in the Dell Bean Bag Game
- [12:19] Snail Snail Kodaly Song Bean Bag Game
- [14:35] Doggie, Doggie Where’s Your Bone Bean Bag Game
- [16:30] Vocal Warmups with Bean Bags
- [18:10] Movement Activities with Bean Bags
- [19:50] Songs with Bean Bags ()
- [21:00] Head Shoulders Knees and Toes
- [21:54] There’s a Chocolate Chip Cookie on My Head Sing Along
- [24:00] Bean Bag Activities for Transitions, Games, Anytime!
SING PLAY CREATE TEACHING TIPS PODCAST LINK
Singing games are great for high engagement because they fill all these needs.
Games also have high engagement because students are involved in the playing of the game.
Playing the games will also help students make important connections learning music concepts.
I’m using BEAR PAW CREEK BEAN BAGS for my activities!
EASY WARM UP BEAN BAG STEADY BEAT GAME for ALL GRADES
Gather your students into a circle.
Give everyone a bean bag.
Play a drum beat.
Ask them to pat the bean bag, toss or pass hand to hand on the steady beat.
Vary the TEMPO of the beat.
Be sure to give at least 8 beats for each tempo change.
Use student leaders to play the drum beat.
Use this bean bag game as a quick transition or brain break activity.
INTRODUCE THE BEAN BAG TO YOUR YOUNGER STUDENTS
This song will help you teach your students expectations with the bean bag and give them their first experience with bean bags.
FREE Bean Bag Activity Song “It’s Time to Say Hello” Video
“It’s Time to Say Hello to the Bean Bag in Your Hand” is a bean bag activity song on the Sing Play Create Kids Music Channel.
GRIZZLY BEAR GAME SONG WITH A BEAN BAG
I like to play this game with Kindergarten through 2nd grade.
Everyone sits in a circle. Everyone has a bean bag.
I place a bucket, or a scarf laid out flat in the middle of the circle.
The circle is the forest, and the bucket or scarf is the cave.
I’ll place a stuffed animal on the scarf.
I walk my students through the lyrics, actions and dynamics first.
The students pass the bean bags around the circle as they softly sing.
Grizzly bear a grizzly bear is sleeping in a cave.
Please be very quiet, very, very, quiet.
Then they hold the bean bag and wave it in the air on WAKE and SHAKE.
If you wake him, if you shake him,
Then TOSS the bean bag into the CAVE on the word MAD!
he gets very mad!
SONGS YOU CAN USE BEAN BAGS FOR THE MOVEMENT
Here’s a fun movement song I wrote just to use with bean bags.
OLD MAC DONALD HAD A FARM
Here’s a game you can play using the song “Old Mac Donald Had a Farm”.
I like using the bean bag because it means no one is touching anyone else and it keeps engagement high.
Choose the order of the animals first before you play the game. Write them on the board or call them out as needed.
There are two ways you can do this activity.
Everyone sits in a circle.
Choose someone to be “Old Mac Donald”.
Give them the bean bag.
“Old Mac Donald” stands in the middle of the circle and dances.
Everyone sings and pats their knees to the beat.
When they get to the “and on that farm she had a _______” the farmer will pass the bean bag to a student. (not throw)
That student is the animal in the song and does animal actions as everyone sings.
“with a neigh, neigh here, neigh neigh there……eieioh!”
Then the “horse” will choose the next animal by passing the bean bag.
The variation is that or you can have “Old Mac Donald” walk around the outside of the circle and pass the bean bag to the closest student. (like duck duck goose)
Either way, you’ll find that engagement goes up using the bean bag!
THE FARMER IN THE DELL
Another fun game you can adapt and play with bean bags is THE FARMER IN THE DELL.
Everyone stands in a circle. The farmer stands in the middle.
Everyone walks around the circle as they sing with their hands behind their backs.
They STOP on the last line “the farmer takes a friend/wife” and put their hands out ready to catch the bean bag.
Then the farmer chooses a “friend/wife” by tossing the bean bag to everyone.
This means that everyone needs to be ready to catch the bean bag.
This means that everyone will be looking at the farmer.
The farmer will have a bean bag and will toss it to the person who will be the “friend/wife” and so on.
During each turn the students can toss the bean bag as everyone sings or put it on the ground and act like the character.
Either way-it gives them something to do.
The farmer in the dell.
The farmer in the dell.
Hi-ho, the derry-o!
The farmer in the dell
The farmer takes a friend.
The wife takes the child.
The child takes the nurse.
The nurse takes the cow.
The cow takes the dog.
The dog takes the cat.
The cat takes the mouse.
The mouse takes the cheese.
The cheese stands alone.
Hi-ho, the derry-o!
The cheese stands alone.
SNAIL, SNAIL BEAN BAG ACTIVITY
I play this game with first grade.
I use it to present “la” and practice ta and ti-ti rhythms.
Snail, snail, snail, snail.
Go around and round and round.
Here’s my twist on turning this song into a bean bag game.
It will also turn into a steady beat activity.
I have the students sing the song and do the traditional game where students form a line.
One end player stands still holding a bean bag and the player at the other end moves in a wide circle, slowly winding the line up tight around the end player as everyone sings.
Once they are would up, instead of uncoiling, I have everyone sit down.
The inner player begins passing the bean bag so that it makes its way out of the circle to the other end player. Players should pass on the beat.
Then everyone stands up and uncoils until they are just a line.
This is a good game to play with 2nd and even 3rd graders. It will remind them of the other music elements like “la” and the rhythms while engaging in a different way.
I then will divide the class in half and each group plays the game. You can turn it into a competition or not.
DOGGIE, DOGGIE WHERE’S YOUR BONE? BEAN BAG ACTIVITY
I like to play this game with 2nd grade.
Here’s a twist on this familiar game song.
In this version, everyone is going to get a bean bag. That way everyone will have something in their hands and something to hide.
The “bone” in the game will be a different object or a specific color of bean bag.
Everyone will still have a chance to learn to take turns and try to trick the doggie!
I teach the music lesson in a video on the Sing Play Create Children’s Music Channel.
Here’s how to play the game.
Poor little doggie. He’s lost his bone.
Can you help him find it?
GOAL OF THE GAME: Students guess who has their bone.
Students sit in a circle.
1 student “the dog” sits in the center of the circle with eyes covered and hands behind her back.
Bean bag or “bone” is placed behind her back.
The teacher walks around the outside of the circle as the students sing the song. Before the song finishes, she taps one of the students to go and get the “bone” from the dog.
The dog gets three guesses.
Whoever has the bone is the next dog.
The teacher can choose or teach the students to walk around the circle and choose someone.
The “dog” that just finished chooses the next doggie.
UPPER ELEMENTARY BEAN BAG ACTIVITIES
NOTES ON THE STAFF GAME
You can use painters tape to make the lines of the staff on the floor.
You can play games using bean bags to practice and demonstrate the note names of the treble clef.
- Students are in teams.
- Each person on the team will take a turn.
- Team #1 tosses a bean bag and T#2 says the note name.
- If they get it wrong T#1 can give the answer for a point.
- Either way T#2 will then toss the bean bag and play continues.
- Winner has the most points.
BEAN BAG MOVEMENT ACTIVITY
Bean bags can also be used for movement activities.
You can use a bean bag, pair up your students and have them toss to each other on the beat.
Just play some fun music.
I also have many bean bag songs and activities you can find on Spotify, Amazon Music and Apple Music iTunes
And the products are in the TpT store.
Here’s a fun movement song with bean bags you can use with younger students. I like it as a beginning activity to help them get to know the bean bag.
It also incorporates gross motor muscle movement as well as fine motor muscle exercise. Students will be crossing the midline and waving high/low and side to side in this video.
It’s on the Sing Play Create Kids Music Channel
DO THE BEAN BAG TWIST
BEAN BAG ACTIVITIES
You can keep engagement high by using bean bag activities in your elementary music classroom.
You may want to check out these Bean Bag Activities
Bean Bag Games for PE, Music, Brain Breaks
Buggy Bean Bag Activities and Games- for Preschool, Music and Movement Classes
If you want to read more about Bean Bag Activities in the music room check out these links:
ELEMENTARY MUSIC ACTIVITIES FOR SPRING
How Bean Bag Activities Develop Movement Skills
Free Bean Bag Activities for Music Class
I’m hoping you can keep engagement high using music Bean Bag activities.
Let’s Move and Learn with Music!