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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Rhythm Game for Orchestra - Rhythm Cat LIVE!

I started teaching my beginning orchestra about beat, note values and rhythms last week.  Kids learn very quickly when I use the app called Rhythm Cat.  I have students take turns playing the game as it is projected on a screen in front of the classroom.  The rest of the class can participate by plucking the rhythm on open strings or clapping the rhythm while saying the counting.  Students really love this game.

The next day after we played the first 5 or 6 levels of the game, I brought a bag of large sized marshmallows to class and told students that we are playing Rhythm Cat LIVE!  I made about 10 cards with notes on them - just quarter notes, rests, half notes, and whole notes.  10 students would then come up and pick a card and would receive a big marshmallow for each beat.  They then had to stand in a line and as the class counted and clapped a steady beat, students had to show their note card and pop their marshmallows in their mouths as we went the down the line.  The kids loved having the whole note because they had to shove 4 big marshmallows in their after the the beat.  Students then passed their cards to other students who wanted a turn and every student was able to participate.  One way to make the game better would be to organize the students in groupings of 4 beats so that it is easier to count....but I didn't do that because I wanted to move the game along quickly. We just counted the number of beats on each card.

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