The “Feel” of Music (kindergarten lesson plan)

This lesson incorporates music and art concepts to explore the “feel” of music.

Lesson Title

The “Feel” of Music


Kindergarten interdisciplinary lesson plan for Music and Art


  • Medium to play music, such as computer, boombox, etc.
  • Various songs of different types (slow, fast, upbeat, sad, etc.) preferably from different cultures/genres
  • Crayons of many different colors for each student to use
  • Large piece of paper that can be divided/folded into parts


The students will

  • Listen to different songs and recognize contrasting expressions, emotions, sounds, etc.
  • Identify expressions and emotions that they feel the songs represent.
  • Translate the expressions and emotions into terms of art, such as color, line, etc.
  • Describe their personal reactions to the musical selections and how they referenced those reactions in their artwork.



ART.M.I.K.11             Recognize contrasting expressions of music.

ART.M.III.K.3            Describe the music performed and presented in kindergarten by moving, drawing, or through other appropriate responses.

ART.M.III.K.4            Introduce music vocabulary emphasizing opposites; i.e. fast and slow, loud and soft

ART.M.III.K.7            Identify and support personal reactions to a musical selection.

ART.M.IV.K.1            Identify and describe distinguishing characteristics of starkly contrasting styles.

ART.M.V.K.2             Observe and identify cross-curricular connections with the kindergarten curriculum


ART.VA.I.K.2             Work with materials and tools safely with environmental awareness.

ART.VA.I.K.3             Explore the elements of art through playful sensory experiences.

ART.VA.I.K.4             Prepare, complete, and sign finished artwork.

ART.VA.II.K.2           Use a variety of lines, colors, and basic geometric shapes and patterns to creatively express feelings and personal experiences.

ART.VA.II.K.5           Express thoughts and ideas through the creation of artwork.

ART.VA.III.K.2          Recognize that art can be created for self-expression or fun.

ART.VA.III.K.3          Describe the sensory qualities in a work of art.

ART.VA.V.K.3           Identify how pattern, shape, rhythm, and movement are used throughout the arts.

ART.VA.V.K.4           Explore connections between the visual arts and other curriculum.

Anticipatory Set

5 minutes

Open discussion with students about music:

  • Do you like listening to music?  Why or why not?
  • How do they feel when they listen to music?
  • Does it make them want to dance or sing?
  • Do they feel the same feelings with every song they hear, or do they feel differently about different songs?
  • If you could color or draw how you feel when you listen to a song, what would it look like?

Introduction / Direct Instruction

5 minutes

  • Instruct the children to fold their sheets of paper in as many parts as you have musical selections (i.e. 6 songs, fold the paper to make 6 sections, divided by fold lines).
  • (Transition) “Let’s listen to this first song. As you listen, think about how it makes you feel.  Then, I would like you to color or draw in the first square what you think this song sounds like, or how it makes you feel.  You can draw anything, and it can be any color, as long as you can explain what you drew and how it relates to the music.”
  • Play an excerpt from the first song. Allow the students time to think, then draw.  If further direction is needed, reiterate: “Listen first, then think, and lastly, draw.”

Checking for Understanding

2 minutes

At the end of the first excerpt, select a few students to describe their artwork. Ask: “How did the song make you feel?  What colors did you choose and why?  Did you draw any objects or people, or is it just color?”  You may also use this opportunity to define “abstract art.”  This discussion is to ensure comprehension of what is expected of the students before moving on.

Direct Instruction/Guided Practice/Assessment of Learning

10-15 minutes

Continue with the rest of the musical selections. Discuss each as needed.  Take time to notice differentiation between students’ reactions, i.e. “This song made Suzie feel sad, but it also made Andrew feel tired.  Why do you think that is?” or “Suzie feels sad, so she used the color blue.  Andrew felt tired, so he used the color black.  Why do you think that is?”  Have students explain their reasoning.

Lesson Close

Select a quieter song to use for transition, and relate the components of the song to the students’ expression. “Listen to the softness and quietness of this song.  Let’s be just as quiet as we put away our things and move on to the next lesson.”


By |March 7th, 2016|Arts, Kindergarten, Music|

Primary and Secondary Colors (kindergarten lesson plan)

This lesson combines art and music concepts to teach a catchy song that will help young students memorize their primary colors.  They will then translate their knew knowledge to an art activity to explore beyond  the primary colors into secondary colors.

Title of Lesson

Primary and Secondary Colors


Kindergarten Arts

Complementary subject: music


The Primary Color song for easy remembering of the primary colors:

The Primary Color Song
(sung to the tune of Three Blind Mice)

Red, Yellow, Blue
Red, Yellow, Blue
I see you
Red, Yellow, Blue
You are the primary colors
You make all the other colors
I wish I was a color
Like Red, Yellow, Blue


ART.VA.I.K.2       Work with materials and tools safely with environmental awareness.
ART.VA.I.K.3       Explore the elements of art through playful sensory experiences.
ART.VA.I.K.4       Prepare, complete, and sign finished artwork.
ART.VA.II.K.1      Explore the basic uses of art materials to produce artwork.
ART.VA.II.K.2      Use a variety of lines, colors, and basic geometric shapes and patterns to creatively express feelings and personal experiences.
ART.VA.II.K.4      Select subject matter and communicate a personal story in a painting or drawing.
ART.VA.II.K.5      Express thoughts and ideas through the creation of artwork.
ART.VA.III.K.4    Describe a personal artwork.
ART.VA.V.K.1       Identify and discuss art in the student’s environment.


Students will:

  • Identify primary and secondary colors.
  • Explain how mixing primary colors can create secondary colors.
  • Create marble art pieces to demonstrate their understanding of primary and secondary colors, as well as how to make secondary colors.


  • Red, yellow, blue paints
  • Several marbles
  • Shallow cardboard boxes
  • Tape
  • Paper plates
  • Smocks
  • Color Palette Worksheet
  • Whiteboard
  • Red, yellow, blue dry erase markers
  • An array of colored markers, crayons, or colored pencils – ensure you have several colors for each child to choose from.


  • primary color
  • secondary color
  • shade
  • tint
  • hue

Class Time Needed

Lesson can expand across three days, or be condensed into 1-2 long lessons.


To minimize on mess, parent volunteers would be a great asset for the marble art portion of this lesson plan.

Lesson Procedure

Day 1: 15-30 minutes

  1. Introduce the concept of primary and secondary colors by discussing red, yellow, and blue.  Demonstrate the colors by coloring circles of each color on the whiteboard using dry erase markers.  This allows students to more easily visualize the lesson.
  2. Discuss how red, yellow, and blue are primary colors. These are the “main” colors that all other colors are made from.  Teach the students the Primary Color song, which is sung to the tune of “Three Blind Mice.”  The lyrics are:
    Red, Yellow, Blue
    Red, Yellow, Blue
    I see you
    Red, Yellow, Blue
    You are the primary colors
    You make all the other colors
    I wish I was a color
    Like Red, Yellow, Blue
  3. Ask students questions about the primary colors, such as: if they have ever mixed these colors together and what colors they have made; how they have mixed colors (using what medium); what happens when they mix two colors, three colors, or all colors together?
  4. Once the students have thought about the colors they have mixed, hand each child the color palette worksheet. Ask students to color circles on their papers of colors and think  about how each color was made.
  5. Have students suggest colors they think are made from mixing other colors; ask the students what colors they think are mixed to make the color they suggested – write the name of the color on the board beneath the primary colors. Discuss how these mixed colors are hues, tints, and shades of the primary colors, and then define each type (hue, tint, shade).  Discuss primary versus secondary colors.

Day 2: 30-60 minutes

  1. Start the lesson by singing the Primary Color song.
  2. Divide students into groups to minimize the number of paint stations in the classroom. Each group should have a paper plate on which you will poor blue, red, and yellow paint.
  3. Each student should have their own cardboard boxes. Cereal boxes with one side cut out work great for this: be sure to tape the sides of the box shut so that a marble can safely roll around in the box.
  4. Have each student put on their smock. Then, put one marble in each color of paint.  Each student should use one marble from each color of paint to roll in their boxes, creating a marble art piece of the primary colors.
  5. To create secondary colors, have each student pick a color they would like to create. For example: a student may saturate a marble in the yellow paint, and then dip it into the red paint as well.  Then, when rolling the marble in the box, they will see how the combined colors create orange.  At this point, it is okay to mix paint colors as they dip – the mess is fun!  As the students create their artwork, encourage discussion about the colors they are making, whether they are primary or secondary, and whether or not they are creating hues, tints, or shades.  Ask students why they chose a certain color, what they like about that color, and what other things are that color.

Day 3: 15 minutes

  1. Start the lesson by singing the Primary Color song.
  2. The marble art pieces should be dry and ready to show off to each other/take them home. Students may discuss with each other or as a whole class the colors they created.

Extension Activity

15-30 minutes

Choose a piece of artwork that is fun to look at and has many colors represented.  Ask students to look for the primary colors.  Then, ask the students to look for secondary colors.  Ask which colors were created to make the secondary colors that they spot.  Subsequently, allow the students to create their own drawing, and have them pay attention to which colors they are using.  Circulate the room and check in with students, asking them which colors they are using, whether they are primary or secondary, and if secondary which colors can be mixed to create the secondary color.


Image credits: Poissy Design,

By |February 1st, 2016|Arts, Kindergarten, Music|

Physics: Forces and Interactions (kindergarten/3rd grade lesson plan)

This lesson introduces students of any age to introductory physics.  This fun activity leads into a customizable lesson that can be tailored to most elementary grades.

Lesson Title

Forces and Interactions


Kindergarten and/or 3rd Grade Science (physics)

Materials needed

  • hairdryer
  • lightweight ball such as a ping pong ball


  • Students will observe the concept of force and its interaction with Earth’s gravity.
  • Students will observe the interaction between higher air pressure and the pull of gravity.
  • Students will develop an understanding of Newton’s law of action and reaction: 3rd law: for every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction.


Kindergarten: Forces and Interactions, Pushes and Pulls

K-PS2-1:       Plan and conduct an investigation to compare the effects of different strengths or different directions of pushes and pulls on the motion of an object.

K-PS2-2:       Analyze data to determine if a design solution works as intended to change the speed or direction of an object with a push or a pull.

Grade 3: Forces and Interactions

3-PS2-1:       Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence of the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces on the motion of an object.

Anticipatory set

  • Kindergarten: use a diagramming exercise to focus students’ attention on the class objectives.
  • Third grade: use brainstorming techniques and a Writing to Learn (WTL) exercises to focus students’ attention on the class objectives.


Discuss the concepts of gravity, force, air pressure, action and reaction.

Pose questions to engage students. Have students brainstorm and either write down (grade 3) or discuss (kindergarten) theories that may answer the questions.  Pose more complicated questions to grade 3 students.  Questions may include: How does gravity keep us on the ground? What happens if we don’t have gravity?  How does the concept of force relate to gravity?  How do things float?  Can we make something float despite gravity, and if so, how?

  • Grade 3: Conduct the demonstration and ask questions to further understanding: what do you think will happen to the ball when we put it in the air stream? What will happen if we try to pull the ball out of the air stream?  Why do you think the ball can float?  Is the force of gravity still in effect?  What is the “action” and what is the “reaction”?
  • Kindergarten: Conduct the demonstration and have the students draw what they see. As you discuss action and reaction, have the students diagram using arrows and other symbols to display what they believe is happening, i.e. gravity versus air pressure.


  • Angle the blow dryer in an upright position and turn the speed on to its highest level.
  • Carefully position the ping pong ball in the air stream, then let go.
  • Move the blow dryer slowly and carefully to demonstrate how the ball will move in sequence with the blow dryer. (Further thinking #1)
  • Have a student slowly and carefully attempt to move the ball out of the air stream. (Further thinking #2)
  • Attempt to tilt the air stream to one side and see if the ball stays suspended. (Further thinking #3)
  • Have a student attempt to add another ball to the air flow. (Further thinking #4)


As the experiment is conducted, have students hypothesize outcomes for each “Further thinking” application. Use the hook, “What would happen if…?”

  • Explain: the airflow from the blow dryer pushes the ping pong ball upwards until its upward force equals the force of gravity pushing down on it. When it reaches this point, it gently bounces around, floating when the upward and downward forces are equal.
  • Explain: the reason the ping pong ball stays nicely inside the column of air produced by the blow dryer without shifting sideways is due to air pressure. The fast moving air from the hair dryer creates a column of lower air pressure.  The surrounding higher air pressure forces the ping pong ball to stay inside this column, making it easy to move the blow dryer around without losing control of the ball.
  • Compare: What else works similarly to this concept? The outward-flowing air exerts an inward force on the ball, just like the downward flow of air beneath a helicopter exerts an upward force on the blades of the helicopter.
  • What does it mean when the wavy lines on the paper are higher or lower? How could you use that to measure an earthquake?  Example: height of the largest waves indicates the size of an earthquake.
  • How can scientists use seismographs all over the world to pinpoint the location of an earthquake? Think about ripples in a pond or GPS systems.  Example: length of the earthquake record and the arrival times of each wave, the distance of the focus from the recording point can be determined.
  • What parts of the activity emulate how a true earthquake occurs? What are some of the problems an earthquake causes?  Examples: destruction of buildings, larger earthquakes causing small changes to Earth’s orbit, etc.

What to do next time

  • Have the students consider ways to improve the activity, or present new ways to test action and reaction.
By |November 17th, 2015|3rd Grade, Kindergarten, Science|
Load More Posts