Sunday, August 16, 2015

Music in the Elementary Classroom - Why, How and When?
Do you use music in your classroom?  If you're an elementary school teacher, the answer is probably a definite yes!  Even many middle and high school teachers use music in their classrooms in some way.
Why, How and When does music fit in to you and your student’s school day?  

During my career as a music teacher, I have had the pleasure of seeing the amazing way classroom teachers use music every day.  Though I am a music teacher, I learned a thing or two from these classroom teachers and borrowed many of their ideas.

Why do teachers and students use music in their classrooms?

…is a huge motivator!
…creates atmosphere and mood.
…helps to manage the energy of  a class.
…helps to create bonds between teachers and students  
…is a vocabulary builder.
…helps to teach the structure and rhythm of language.
…makes sometimes dull or boring concepts exciting!
…encourages risk taking and confidence.
…is fun - kids love to sing!

When do teachers and students use music in their classrooms?

Transitions between lessons and activities:
…at the beginning or ending a lesson such as using the same recorded music at the beginning of a lesson as a cue to students that it is starting.
…when cleaning up.
….when making a circle.
…at the beginning of the school day.
…when the class as a whole needs calming or energizing.
…when learning a new language
.…when learning concepts and skills as part of the learning experience: 
  • counting songs
  • color songs
  • geography songs
  • science songs
  • math songs
  • alphabet songs
  • animal songs
How do teachers use music in their classrooms?

Teachers and students use music by:
…using technology.
… creating digital stories.
…writing poetry.
… teaching concepts, skills and content.

Music and Content:
There are many songs that help teach many subjects including social studies, math and science.  I love science, especially geology! Don’t all kids love to hunt for cool rocks?  I have a song about that!

If you are needing music related to the rock cycle, minerals, gemstones and earth changes, look no further!  My music program based on national science standards is perfect for a basic geology unit.  This musical with 7 songs, script, orchestrated accompaniment and rehearsal tracks has already been performed in several Colorado schools and schools in other states.

I hope you enjoy this short preview of the opening song, "Rock Concert!"

If you'd like to know more about "Rock Concert!" visit the informational site at:

Music can transform a “so-so” learning environment to a “Wow! I love school!” engaging space. Think of the ways you use music now and add a couple more during the first week of school.  I think you’ll find that your classroom will come to life!

Contact me for song ideas and questions about getting started with using music in your classroom!  
Please Visit: 
my store: Sue McTigue at Teach Me With a Song
Sue's Facebook Page
Sue's Pinterest

Thursday, June 4, 2015

The Mile High TPT Meetup on May 30th was a blast! Thank you to all the vendors who supported us by donating items for our swag bags. Join the raffle to win a bag of teaching goodies!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Hello!  I am Sue McTigue, music educator and now "retired" after 31 years of teaching. I am also a notebook software trainer, private piano, guitar and voice teacher and composer of children's choral music.  My blog and Teachers Pay Teachers store  is named after my recently published piece, "Teach Me With a Song".  Please enjoy the premiere performance!

Douglas County School District Honor Choir Performance of "Teach Me With a Song"April, 2015

The Story...
Students with special needs have always participated in my music classes and have taught me much about the power of music in the human experience.  This piece was inspired by one of these students.
Jake, a student with autism, loved to sing and learned almost everything through song.  Lyrics, with rhythm and melody were something he used to help himself learn.  One day as I was walking through the special education wing in our school, I stopped to listen to a conversation between Jake and a teacher who was attempting to keep his interest in learning letter sounds.  He was not attentive at all, distracted by everything around him.  Jake rarely spoke, so my heart soared when he finally exclaimed, “Too hard!  Teach me with a song!”  Jake was passionately telling this teacher how he learned best, through song.  We helped him with these concepts, through simple melodic jingles, and it worked!
 Jake’s words inspired the poetry, followed by the song.  I hope your students enjoy singing “Teach Me With a Song” while pondering the great influence of music in their lives.