One of the most important things we teachers can do at the beginning of the school year is to learn our students’ names. That’s why I’m sharing 5 name games for elementary music class.
5 NAME GAMES FOR ELEMENTARY MUSIC CLASS
It’s hard to learn so many names so quickly. Hopefully I can give you some ideas using games to help you learn the names of all of your students.
And it’s hard to do it quickly.
I know that everyone learns differently, and that includes teachers.
So I’m sharing how I learn students names.
Since we only meet one time a week, it takes a couple of weeks of classes.
But usually after the first month I have everyone’s names learned.
Maybe you can do it faster!
I love this instrument _tambourine. I can use it in so many ways.
I can play the beat and change the tempo and the dynamics.
It’s noisy and gets everyone’s attention.
But I like to use it because I can walk around the classroom and sing student names.
HOW I DO IT
So, the way I learn names is to say or sing my students names.
At the beginning of the year, I use the class list and put it on a music stand.
After we sing the hello song, I chant their names.
When I chant their names, I ask everyone to call it back to me.
The student sits down after we say their name.
This is a great transition activity. It’s very calming and gets the students right back into music land.
I like it because it helps everyone see each other and hear their names and then they feel like they are a part of the class.
I talk more about welcoming students to the music room and procedures in this video for primary grades.
PLAY THE GAME
Then we can play the game.
We’re going to say names on the beat.
I keep the tempo with my hand drum and call the name.
Everyone pats their knees as we play the game.
Since I don’t know the names yet, I’ll use the class list and we won’t go in order around the circle.
1 2 ready go-
I say the name and everyone echoes.
That student waves to everyone.
Keep it going.
Later I have the students say their own names and we go around the circle with the goal of keeping the beat.
This sounds like a simple game, but it works well for all grades because it’s about the students names and saying the beat.
Learning student names is a challenge and there’s many ways to do it!
NAME GAME #2
The more we get together song and game.
Sing the song
Pat Clap clap the beat.
If you’re playing this on the first day of class you could use your class list to call out the names and ask the students to wave or stand up when they hear their name.
Later you can try using Game #1 and this song together.
NAME GAME #3
I made this name game up and I teach the game in this video. It also has several other songs, hello and goodbye as well as 2 name games.-
Hello, hello what’s your name? My name’s ______ that’s my name.
Hello, hello how do you do?
It’s so nice to meet you!
Teach the song, then go around the circle and ask students to fill in their names.
Everyone sings the song together.
If there’s a shy student, then help them out on the first day.
I like to have everyone wave when they say it’s so nice to meet you!
If your students are able, they can pat and clap at they sing the song like this:
NAME GAME #4
I teach the words and the song to this game in this video too.
Clap your hands and stomp your feet.
Waddle like a duck on the steady beat.
Jump up high and twist down low.
Say your name and wave hello!
HOW TO PLAY
Sing the song. Have everyone stand in a circle.
The teacher walks around the outside of the circle and taps someone’s shoulder on the phrase “say your name”.
Then that student will be the next chooser.
Keep playing until everyone has had a turn saying their name.
NAME GAME #5
BEE BEE BUMBLE BEE
This activity can be found in the Elementary Music Class Resources for Management & Procedures Songs, Chants, Games, Activities with over 55 songs, chants and games you can use in your elementary music classroom.
BEE BEE BUMBLEBEE
Stung a man upon his knee.
Stung a pig upon his snout.
Goodness me if you’re not out!
Before I play the game I play one of the other name games so that students have had a chance to hear everyone’s name.
This is how I play the game.
I have the students make two rows and face each other.
One person is going to walk around the outside tapping the shoulders on the beat.
When they way the words “out!” then they have to say the name of the person they tap. If they don’t know the name, then they ask nicely, “what’s your name?” The student then answers, and the tapper can then run away.
The student chases them around the lines and tries to get back to their spot before being tagged.
Whoever doesn’t get back to the line first is the next tapper.
This way is a bit harder to play, but it does help everyone learn names.
And I’ve found that the upper elementary students even like this version.
FIRST DAY LESSON PLAN
You can find all the name games and hello songs in one video.
The video is about 10 minutes long.
You can use these fun activities on the first day of class with grades K-3.
Here’s the outline of the activities.
Hello My good friends
[1:47] Hello What’s Your Name?
[3:02] Scarf Movement
[3:57] Calm Down
[5:07] Name Game
[6:36] The More We Get Together
[8:02] Goodbye My Friends Goodbye
I created a sample lesson plan of how to use this in your classes.
You can adjust the times by choosing how much teaching you’ll do and how long of a movement activity you want for that first day.
This example will give you at least 40 minutes of activities that can easily be shortened to 30 minutes.
1 Sing the hello song. 5 minutes
2 Learn student names. 10 minutes
3 Do a short scarf movement activity either from this video or for a longer scarf movement activity use the SCHOOL TIME SCARF VIDEO. 5-7 minutes
4 Next do the 1 minute calm down activity 1 minute
5 Play the name game 10-12 minutes
6 sit down and sing the more we get together- pat clap, clap or pat snap, snap Call out the names around the circle on the first day. 5 minutes
7 Sing goodbye 2 minutes
I’m hoping these ideas will help you learn your students names so that you can make those personal connections right away.
You may want to look at this video for 10 BTS activities for elementary music class.
RESOURCES FOR THE FIRST DAY OF MUSIC CLASS
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