Tools for Teaching

Tools for Teaching from Smithsonian Folkways provides ideas and resources for educators to inspire their use of Folkways music from around the world. Information about these sounds and the cultures that create them are a valuable resource to courses in history, geography, language arts, social studies, visual arts-and of course music and dance.
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Suggested Grade Levels: K-12. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10134-music-in-poetry.pdf The Music in Poetry. The lessons in this issue introduce students to the rhythms of poetry. The exercises take poetry off the page and put it into terms of movement, physical space, and, finally, music.

Suggested Grade Levels: K-12. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10134-music-in-poetry.pdf The Music in Poetry. The lessons in this issue introduce students to the rhythms of poetry. The exercises take poetry off the page and put it into terms of movement, physical space, and, finally, music.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10130_PuertoRico.pdf Jíbaro to the Bone! Puerto Rican Music for the Classroom. This lesson is intended to develop musical and literary skills using jíbaro music from Puerto Rico. In a series of three lessons, students will learn typical instrumentation and forms, augment their vocabulary, and listen to the lyrics in jíbaroas a means of understanding modern Puerto Rican culture.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10130_PuertoRico.pdf Jíbaro to the Bone! Puerto Rican Music for the Classroom. This lesson is intended to develop musical and literary skills using jíbaro music from Puerto Rico. In a series of three lessons, students will learn typical instrumentation and forms, augment their vocabulary, and listen to the lyrics in jíbaroas a means of understanding modern Puerto Rican culture.

AFRICA & CARIBBEAN. Suggested Grade Levels: 6-8, 9-12. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10127_Caribbean.pdf Spirits Across the Ocean: Yoruban and Dahomean Cultures in the Caribbean Brought by the Slave Trade. This lesson explores the journey of people from Yoruban and Dahomean cultures to the Caribbean through forced migration of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Students will learn about the similarities of the music found all over Latin…

AFRICA & CARIBBEAN. Suggested Grade Levels: 6-8, 9-12. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10127_Caribbean.pdf Spirits Across the Ocean: Yoruban and Dahomean Cultures in the Caribbean Brought by the Slave Trade. This lesson explores the journey of people from Yoruban and Dahomean cultures to the Caribbean through forced migration of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Students will learn about the similarities of the music found all over Latin…

ASIA. Suggested Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10122_Philippines.pdf Two Children's Songs from the Philippines. This lesson consists of two children’s songs from the Philippines. Students will be exposed to Tagalog language and translation; culture, manners, and geography of the Philippines; 3/4 time, steady beat, dance and movement; unison singing, Orff playing and accompaniment, etc.

ASIA. Suggested Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10122_Philippines.pdf Two Children's Songs from the Philippines. This lesson consists of two children’s songs from the Philippines. Students will be exposed to Tagalog language and translation; culture, manners, and geography of the Philippines; 3/4 time, steady beat, dance and movement; unison singing, Orff playing and accompaniment, etc.

AFRICA, CARIBBEAN. Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10117_braiding_rhythms.pdf Braiding Rhythms: The Role of Bell Patterns in West African and Afro-Caribbean Music. Students will listen to music from Ghana, Nigeria, Cuba, and Puerto Rico to learn how this polyrhythmic tradition followed Africans to the Caribbean as a result of the transatlantic slave trade.

AFRICA, CARIBBEAN. Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10117_braiding_rhythms.pdf Braiding Rhythms: The Role of Bell Patterns in West African and Afro-Caribbean Music. Students will listen to music from Ghana, Nigeria, Cuba, and Puerto Rico to learn how this polyrhythmic tradition followed Africans to the Caribbean as a result of the transatlantic slave trade.

Suggested Grade Levels: 4-5. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10132_Newfoundland.pdf. Fish Tales: Exploring the Folk Music of Newfoundland. In this series of lessons students will learn about the culture and economy of Newfoundland, learn to sing the folksongs “I’s the B’y” and “Jack Was Ev’ry Inch a Sailor,” learn a folk dance, play recorder and hand chimes, and create a dramatic play.

Suggested Grade Levels: 4-5. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10132_Newfoundland.pdf. Fish Tales: Exploring the Folk Music of Newfoundland. In this series of lessons students will learn about the culture and economy of Newfoundland, learn to sing the folksongs “I’s the B’y” and “Jack Was Ev’ry Inch a Sailor,” learn a folk dance, play recorder and hand chimes, and create a dramatic play.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10129_Chile_Cuba.pdf Latin American Protest Songs: New Song of Chile and Cuba. Students will learn about the music of the New Song movement by engaging with the melodies, rhythms, and lyrics of four selections. This will teach them about the role music can play in social protest, as well as the specific historical, political, and cultural contexts of the songs.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10129_Chile_Cuba.pdf Latin American Protest Songs: New Song of Chile and Cuba. Students will learn about the music of the New Song movement by engaging with the melodies, rhythms, and lyrics of four selections. This will teach them about the role music can play in social protest, as well as the specific historical, political, and cultural contexts of the songs.

NORTH AMERICA. Suggested Grade Levels: 3-6. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10126_American_Folk.pdf Hootenanny, Hootin' Annie, Will You Dance with Me? Music of the American Folk Music Revival. This lesson is intended to introduce students to the music of the American folk revival that developed between the 1940s and 1960s with notable figures such as Pete Seeger, Burl Ives, Jean Ritchie, Paul Robeson, and many others.

NORTH AMERICA. Suggested Grade Levels: 3-6. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10126_American_Folk.pdf Hootenanny, Hootin' Annie, Will You Dance with Me? Music of the American Folk Music Revival. This lesson is intended to introduce students to the music of the American folk revival that developed between the 1940s and 1960s with notable figures such as Pete Seeger, Burl Ives, Jean Ritchie, Paul Robeson, and many others.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10133_Bluegrass.pdf Bluegrass Music: Chopping and Singing Songs of Sorrow. Students will be introduced to bluegrass music through exercises that emphasize important components of the genre, including feel, form, and common themes. Lesson segments are designed to stand alone, but a progressive study would lend itself to a more complete understanding of the genre as a whole.

Suggested Grade Levels: 9-12, C/U. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10133_Bluegrass.pdf Bluegrass Music: Chopping and Singing Songs of Sorrow. Students will be introduced to bluegrass music through exercises that emphasize important components of the genre, including feel, form, and common themes. Lesson segments are designed to stand alone, but a progressive study would lend itself to a more complete understanding of the genre as a whole.

Suggested Grade Levels: 3-5. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10131_China.pdf Finding the Musical Clues within the Music of the Chinese New Year. We can often find musical clues to help us figure out what story the music is telling us. In this lesson we will examine some traditional Chinese New Year  music and instruments and determine what stories are intertwined within the music.

Suggested Grade Levels: 3-5. View Full Lesson Plan: http://media.smithsonianfolkways.org/docs/lesson_plans/FLP10131_China.pdf Finding the Musical Clues within the Music of the Chinese New Year. We can often find musical clues to help us figure out what story the music is telling us. In this lesson we will examine some traditional Chinese New Year music and instruments and determine what stories are intertwined within the music.

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