Monday, June 10, 2013

Quiet Work Music

One of my favorite, yet VERY simple, ways to help kids work quietly is to play music.  We use "quiet work" music when writing, practicing handwriting, writing our numbers to 100, or any other project that needs mental concentration.  

I'm pretty picky about the quiet work music I play..  Sometimes I try out new songs and if it doesn't work it gets nixed right away.  I have 2 simple rules with the music I choose:

1. It has to be soft music.  If the music is too rowdy the kids get rowdy.  Totally defeats the purpose.
2.  The kids have to like it!  I know they like it when they quiet down and listen to it.  If they try to talk over it I know it's not the song for us.  

Every class is different in the music they enjoy.  It's a year by year process.  One year I had a group of kids that LOVED the Curious George soundtrack.  This year by class adored the Beatles!
I have a classroom ipod and my "Quiet Work" playlist changes every year.  What worked for one class might not work for another class.  In the end the process and routine is worth it because they do settle down and work- even if it's only for 10 minutes it is a blissful 10 minutes and they get more work done!

Some of my FAVORITE work songs are:
Let it Be  by The Beetles
Yesterday by The Beetles
Somewhere Over the Rainbow  by Katharine McPhee
Landslide by the Dixie Chicks
Godspeed (Sweet Dreams) by the Dixie Chicks
All the songs on Jack Johnson's Sing-a-Long and Lullabies CD 
Kindergarten Wall by John McCutcheon

By the end of the year the kids are singing along softly to the songs while they work.  It's adorable!

I also have a playlist of classical music (mostly soft piano music) that the kids enjoy too.  We even play it when creating art projects. . . I tell the kids it "wakes up and inspires" our brains.

Do you use "quiet work" music in your room?  If so, what songs do your kids enjoy?

1 comment:

  1. I love Jack Johnson! Thanks for sharing that one..normally I put on quiet music when we are doing writing and I use Pandora and set it to meditation..I'll have to throw a little J.Johnson in there too next year! ;)