Play a Song

Student Contributor: C. Sanchez
Teachers will play a positive and happy song when their students are feeling overwhelmed or frustrated with school. A teacher will utilize this as a preventative strategy.

This tool is to be used when students are feeling overwhelmed with what they are learning. A teacher might most frequently use this during a hard unit of school that they know is difficult. IF students are starting to get upset or their work level has gone down, the teacher can play a happy and positive song. If students are overwhelmed by a difficult lesson and have given up, this can cause distraction within the classroom. However, teachers can play a positive song such as “Walking on Sunshine.” This serves as a brain break for all the students, especially those struggling. However, this also helps to reestablish the atmosphere of the classroom. Teachers can help their students see learning as a positive experience. This can also help students see that in the midst of a difficult problem, a positive mindset can be beneficial. This is supportive because it redirects the class and helps them not be distracted by being overwhelmed or upset.

This is a supportive strategy because it is addressing negative behavior that is arising. This strategy helps students to reset and take a break, therefore it provides students with the opportunity to correct their own behavior. Any time a teacher plays a specific song, students can be assured that it is time to take a break. This strategy supports the students and prevents them from getting overwhelmed. This tool should be used frequently. Similarly, this should not be used once the students' behavior has escalated into chaos, otherwise it would be in the corrective phase. Instead, this tool is to be utilized to help students revaluate and assess their behavior. This strategy does not only have to be used when the teacher notices exhaustion and frustration. This strategy can be used consistently in the classroom, thus giving students a consistent brain break when they hear the designated song.

More Information –
Tool Source: Todd Finley

2 thoughts on “Play a Song”

  1. Kindergarten, 20 students, Suburban
    This tool was fairly easy for me to prepare for, teach, and use in my classroom because a similar management tool was already being used by my mentor teacher. The students were used to having a brain break every single day between literacy rotation 2 and 3. So, implementing this into a different time during the day was good for the students to be able to have an additional movement break. This is also something that can just be added to different times during the day and does not take any time out of the daily instruction.
    I noticed success with this tool because the students were able to have some time away from what they were learning where they could just take a second to have some fun and move around a little. It was especially successful when it was used in the afternoon after lunch because that is usually when the students have checked out a little bit. This allowed them a little more time to focus back up on what they are going to be doing next. It is also a successful tool for students because a lot of the time they know the song that is being played so they enjoy singing along and that also helps them get out of whatever mood they are in and into a better one that will make their learning better.
    The students understood their role with new tool because like I said before they are pretty used to this sort of activity. I made sure to remind them of the rules that came with it as well which is that they either needed to stay at their seat during the song or they were allowed to stand at their number on the carpet if they wanted to move around a little bit more. They were reminded to keep their hands to themselves and keep their voice levels down since we are still in the building. There was also times that the students were allowed to pick what song they wanted to listen to and they understood their role for that when someone else is choosing.
    This could be better by being something that is done every single week if needed. This would allow the students something to look forward to that they can do to reset their minds when it comes to anything that they might be struggling with. If it was to be done every single week then it could be a good adjustment to have a schedule for the students and who gets to pick the song every week.

  2. This is a management tool that I tried out. I used this in a kindergarten class of 20 students. This was in a suburban school. This tool was simple to prepare for, the only time consuming thing about it was finding songs that were fitting and appropriate for this kindergarten class. I implemented playing a calming song for the students in the afternoon when they get a little louder and a little restless. This gives them a brain break and helps them focus back in on their learning. This has seemed to be successful so far. After they get their moves out and are listening to the relaxing song, they seem to get a little bit quieter. The students know that when a song comes on, they can dance or sing, but when the song is over, it is time to get back to learning so I would say that yes, they do understand their role. I think something that could make this better would be to suggest or ask the students if they need a brain break instead of just assuming they need one. Of course the students will probably say yes, but knowing the appropriate time to ask I think would be helpful so that it is a collaborative decision.


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