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Build a Band

Piece Preparation

  1. Give each student a copy of the piece you’re working with.
  2. Work together to figure out the chord for each bar (measure) and write it above the measure using the correct colour.
  3. If you will be using our Keyboard Map to assist younger students, you should use those colours. (You can find the keyboard map and instructions on the Chroma Christmas page.) If you are not, feel free to use colours which match your boomwhackers (if appropriate) or else choose your own colour scheme.

Build the Band

  1. Give each student an instrument, such as piano, bells, glockenspiel, boomwhackers, drum, maracas, etc.
  2. Choose one student on a melodic instrument to be your improviser and tell them the notes they can use (whichever scale is appropriate). Everyone else with a pitched instrument should play either the chord shown or the root note of the chord, depending on their level.
  3. Assign each of the others one note value to play. Keep it simple, with some students holding for the full bar (measure) and others playing on the main beat.
  4. Choose one student who has a percussion instrument to be the band leader. They must check that everyone’s ready and then count in.
  5. Rotate the students to the next instrument/station and repeat the piece until everyone has tried each role.