Years ago, I developed my own Beginning Recorder method written specifically for my students. It has been widely used and loved by many teachers and students, including myself and my students. I took ideas from Recorder Karate by Music K-8 but adapted it to fit my teaching style and classroom needs.
I highly encourage you check it out. The reviews on my Teachers Pay Teachers store speak for themselves and I am proud of the feedback I have gotten. I am so grateful to know this method has helped so many other teachers for many years!
(disclaimer: this post contains paid affiliate links - these are the items I recommend and if you purchase via the link, I could get a small commission from the sale of that product. Thanks!!)
Preview and Purchase Recorders Rock Beginning Recorder Method
The History of Recorders Rock….
I developed the Recorders Rock method by filling a classroom need over many years of teaching in the music classroom. It has been a labor of love and has gone through a number of edits and revisions since I originally published it in 2012. You can see my original blog post about it here – Beginning Recorder Method Book: Recorders Rock
I also posted about a number of great recorder resources in two other past posts…check them out below….
- Recorder Resources from 2013
- Recorder (and Other Resources) from 2014
How I Implement Recorders Rock…
The Recorders Rock method book contains 30+ songs presented in a scaffolded progression. The first songs only use two notes – E and G. Gradually notes are added and the progression of songs makes learning the recorder accessible and achievable for all.
Throughout the progression of songs, certain ones are featured as color leveled songs. The color leveled songs (ie. red level is Pease Porridge, orange level is Apple Tree, etc) are the required songs for students to test or “pass off” individually for the teacher.
In my classroom, when it is time to “pass off” songs, I bring a small group of 3-5 students up at a time to test (one student plays at a time though while the others wait). The rest of the class is independently practicing from their books; they are scattered around the room, and yes, it is borderline cacophony in here but we manage. The beauty of this method is they can start working through the method book at their own pace once I have given them the foundation of the basics of playing with good tone and reading music notation. So the students are working, practicing, and even testing at self-directed pace
My students are moving right along in the method book this spring semester. Being at a new school this year, I knew I needed to get my Recorder Reward system organized and prepared for when they start earning the leveled songs!
Recorders Rock is structured so the teacher can decide how the levels are rewarded. Some ideas could include coloring in a square on a chart, adding a bead to the neck strap or case, tying a colored piece of yarn or string around the neckstrap, or getting a sticker or charm. The possibilities are limited only by the colors. Since the colors are in rainbow order, this reward system lends itself to many ideas I haven’t even thought of!
The rewards I give for the leveled songs in recorder karate are the colored rainbow loom bands that kids make those woven bracelets out of. They’ve been super popular for years and are thankfully easy to find and super affordable. Most come in packs of 300 or 600 for a couple dollars. Super cost effective! Each song corresponds to a colored band that the students can add to neck of their recorder. I find that, despite it being so simple, these bands are highly motivating.
You can find these bands at most craft or big box stores and you can get most of the colors in a large set for $10-20 or so. Depending on your class sizes, the quantities you can get at this price could last you years!
This set below is a great deal and comes with all the basic colors!
For the levels beyond black in this system, I ordered some specialty bands directly from RainbowLoom.com.
I choose the following…
Master – Silver
Expert – Gold
Virtuoso – Chameleon Color Change!
Rock Star – Rainbow Tie Dye
To keep them organized, I used a small 16-drawer tool box organizer meant for small notions or hardware. Here is the link to the one I ordered on Amazon….
I created labels to add to each drawer for some added color coding. Below the next few pictures will be a link to download a PDF for FREE of the labels I created! They will fit perfectly with the organizer above!
To create the same system that I am using, download a copy of these labels for FREE below!