I’ve been fascinated by sharks as long as I can remember (I’ll watch any movie with sharks, even this one!) so when brainstorming themes for group lessons this was at the top of my list. If you and/or your students are into sharks you might like these activities from our recent Shark Attack Group Lesson.
Once everyone arrived we warmed up with the Shark Attack song, which is great for groups. But be warned, you’ll be singing it to yourself for the next few days!
Musical Activity Stations
I love including activity stations in group lessons. Students have a lot of fun with all the different activities without realising how much music theory they’re learning (mwah-ha-ha)! Depending on the number of students we’ll have between three and five different stations. These include a mix of games, worksheets, and theory activities that can be completed individually or in pairs.
Feed the Shark
As soon as I saw this activity on Pinterest I wanted to create a music theory version! Because of my shark obssession I already owned one (OK, two) shark cardboard cutouts, but it would be simple enough to make your own. I also had these note name fish flash cards from Susan Paradis, and created a piano keys version for my beginner students too (if you’d like to download a copy here’s the US version or A4 version).
This game was super easy to play:
- Turn over a flash card
- Name the note
- Play it on the piano
- Feed the card to the hungry shark!
Shark Clip It Cards
Another Pinterest-inspired activity, this was surprisingly the favourite of the day! Each card had a musical question plus three answers. Students clipped a peg on the correct answer, then turned the card over to see if they had it right. Simple and effective.
I adapted a couple of my theory worksheets to make them shark-themed, and also used these Sharp Week worksheets from Melody Payne.
Jawsome Note Values
I’d come across a maths version of this game which was very easy to adapt with note values instead. Students rolled the dice and covered up the note values equal to the number rolled. The winner was the first to cover all the sharks teeth, though of course everyone should be considered a winner because of all the learning 😉
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In the second half of a group lesson I like to include a listening activity, which provides a quieter time for reflection and focus after the excitement of games and half-time treats. For this lesson the pieces fitted the shark theme with The Aquarium by Camille Saint-Saens and La Mer by Debussy.
Usually we’ll do a group composing activity in a group lesson, but for something a little different students chose a page from A Pirate’s Life version of Creative Story Compositions by Jennifer Foxx. There were a couple of under the sea options, which were made even better with the addition of shark pictures!