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Lesson Plan
Smithsonian Institution

The Birth of an Icon: Learning and Performing the Origins of the Drum Set and Early Jazz Drumming in New Orleans, Louisiana

For Teachers 5th - 12th
Bass drum, snare drum, tom-toms, cymbals. Perched behind their drum sets, wielding their drum sticks and wire brushes, drummers lay the grove and are the heartbeat of a band's performance. A dynamic lesson introduces young musicians to...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Jews and Blues

For Teachers 9th - 10th
Students examine how American Jews affect music and entertainment. They identify problems between immigrants and their children. They relate the Jewish American issue to those of African Americans.
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

The Blues, B.B. King, Muddy Waters

For Teachers 6th - 9th
B.B. King and Muddy Waters are two of the most famous blues performers of all time. In this music lesson, middle schoolers study the early careers and lasting musical contributions of both artists, each of whom carried the blues on to...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Country's Music

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
Jazz, Blue Grass, Hip Hop, Swing. Gospel, R&B, Ragtime, Disco. So many music genres born in the USA. After reading an article about the fate of New Orlean's Jazz after Hurricane Katrina, class members investigate the life cycles of...
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Unit Plan
Institut Obert de Catalunya

20th Century Music: Jazz

For Teachers 9th - 12th
A 67-page packet provides instructors with a complete course in the history of Jazz. Lessons look at the roots of jazz in early 20th century African American communities in the southern United States and continues to the New Orleans...
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Lesson Plan
Academy of American Poets

Teach This Poem: "Violin" by Nikki Wallschlaeger

For Teachers 3rd - 12th Standards
Nikki Wallschlaeger's Violin is the featured poem in a lesson that uses music and multiple readings to delve deep into its analysis. After a writing warm-up, learners watch and listen to a video that showcases Regina Carter Quintet's...
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Activity
Digital Public Library of America

Women and the Blues

For Teachers 9th - 12th Standards
A 12-piece primary source packet sets the tone for a study of the role women played in the origins, development, and impact of blues music. Legends like Bessie Smith, Gertrude "Ma" Rainey, Mamie Smith, and Ida Cox are featured, as are...
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Lesson Plan
Smithsonian Institution

Songs, Sounds and Stories from the Georgia Sea Islands

For Teachers K - 12th
American music is the result of the influence of many cultures, including the traditions brought by the African slaves. Young scholars study the polyrhythms, the call-and-response format, and the vocal improvisations of the Gullah...
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Lesson Plan
Smithsonian Institution

The Vocal Blues: Created in the Deep South of the U.S.

For Teachers 6th - 12th
Bring the sounds of the deep South vocal blues to the classroom with a Smithsonian Folkways lesson. In preparation, scholars listen to and count the 12 bar blues patterns in several works and identify the I, II, IV, and V chords as well...
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Lesson Plan
Core Knowledge Foundation

Ray Charles

For Students K - 3rd Standards
Introduce young learners to the read-aloud process with a short biographical passage about Ray Charles. After listening to the passage, class members respond to factual, inferential, and evaluative questions, and then create a timeline...
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Unit Plan
Pearson

Langston Hughes

For Students 7th Standards
An author study provides learners the opportunity to explore in depth the life of, the influences on, and the works of a single literary figure. Introduce middle schoolers to Langston Hughes with a unit that models how to approach an...
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Unit Plan
Jazz Academy

Let Freedom Swing

For Teachers 6th - 12th
Three lessons in the Let Freedom Swing concert tour resource guide packed with information, materials, and activities that provide the context for any study of American history.
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Unit Plan
National Center for Families Learning

The Summer Fun Summer Learning Music Unit

For Teachers 1st - 8th Standards
Take note. Soul music. Gospel music. Country music. Summer comes alive with the sounds of music as program participants learn about various genres of music, create instruments, and write and perform songs about the facts and traditions...
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Unit Plan
Curated OER

Middle School General Music Unit Plans

For Students 6th - 8th
Here's a collection of unit plans for middle school musicians. Topics include the mbira, opera, rhythm and culture, music in Africa, music in the movies, music theory and notation, blues and jazz, and the ocarina. Definitely worth a look.
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

The blues highway: An integration of music with geography

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Young scholars analyze the movement of the blues from rural Mississippi to urban Chicago and how place and the environment affected the development of the blues. They define the blues, where it originated and how and why it moved to...
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Worksheet
Curated OER

The Blues in the Arkansas Delta

For Students 6th - 8th
Oh I love the blues! Here is a wonderful four page reading passage that focuses on the Delta Blues. It covers topics such as, the music's cultural influences, origin, form, terminology, and significance. A great way to integrate...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Get Your Mojo Workin': Part 1 Writing Your Very Own Blues Tune!

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Upper graders listen to the blues. They discuss blues scale, read a description of the blues, and work together to write an original piece. A lesson like this ties into American history and African-American musical contributions very...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Playin' the Blues

For Teachers 3rd - 8th
Students explore history and sounds of blues music, construct instruments from scrap materials, and compose music to accompany lyrics of songs for kids.
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PPT
Curated OER

The History of the "Blues"

For Teachers 6th
Take a quick tour through the history of Blues. Elementary learners will find this presentation easy to understand and full of interesting information. There are web links that direct viewers to additional information but none that...
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Unit Plan
Smithsonian Institution

Smithsonian In Your Classroom: The Music in Poetry

For Teachers K - 12th
Take poetry off the page and put it into terms of movement, physical space and, finally, music with this series of three lessons from the Smithsonian Institution. This resource introduces students to two poetic forms that originated as...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Learning the Blues

For Teachers 9th - 12th
High schoolers take a virtual field trip to Memphis, Tennessee in their study of the blues, its characterisitics, founding fathers, and histororical influence on modern music. They compose blues lyrics that reflect present-day attitudes...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival Chicago - Chicago Blues

For Teachers 9th - 12th
Watching Great Performances’ Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival Chicago launches an investigation into and discussion of how the electric guitar and guitarists have changed the sound of the blues over time. An engaging way to...
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

African American Achievers

For Teachers 4th - 6th
Students complete research projects. Students research the achievements of various African Americans and their contributions to the world. They use various resource links on the Internet to become more knowledgeable about the topic.
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Lesson Plan
Curated OER

Langston Hughes and the Blues

For Teachers 7th - 12th
Students explore the connections between Langson Hughes and blues music. In this African American culture lesson, students compare and contrast blues music with poetry and short stories by Langston Hughes.