Ukulele Centers in the Music Room

I've been super excited to dive into ukulele this year, as I wrote about in this post. In today's post, I'm writing about something new I've tried recently: centers for ukulele!

Ukulele Centers in the Music Room: Ideas for implementing centers for ukulele in your music lessons

If you're wondering about centers in general, and how they should be set up, check out this post, as well as this helpful post by David Row at Make Moments Matter.

I typically set up four centers in my room, around the perimeter, and we rotate every five or so minutes, so that students can go to all of the centers. I like to have my centers all be focused on one concept, or one instrument, so all four of these centers were focused on ukulele!

In the centers I had students do the following:

Center #1: Students practiced several strumming patterns with a PowerPoint from my ukulele lessons set, with the C major chord. They advanced the slides themselves whenever they were ready to move on. Here is a picture of the PowerPoint:

And here is the ukulele lessons set:

Center #2: Students used these cards by David Row from Make Moments Matter, which you can view by clicking on the picture.

The cards were a great way to introduce students to some chords that we didn't have time to learn yet! Students choose a challenge card, then use the other cards to complete the challenge. You could also simply tell students to teach themselves a different chord by using the smaller cards with diagrams.

Center #3: Students finished these worksheets from my No Prep Ukulele worksheets (click the picture to see the worksheets in my store.)

On one side of the worksheet, they colored in all of the C major chords, and on the other side, they wrote silly sentences to match the names of the strings (the one they've learned from me is Aardvarks Eat Cool Grass, for AECG.)

Center #4: Students scanned a QR code on an iPad to be taken to this YouTube video by Bernadette Teaches Music. It's a really effective way to get them comfortable with the C major chord!

After they got done with the video, they could scan another code to be taken to the A minor chord playalong:

Check out Bernadette's YouTube channel; she has a TON of ukulele tutorial videos!

Here are the QR codes; feel free to take a screenshot and use them with your students!

C major:

A minor:

I actually had students watch these videos on something we have in our district called TangyTube, which takes out commercials. If you don't have something like that in your district, I suggest making Chrome the default browser on your devices and using this extension, so students don't have to watch any commercials.

Every 5 or so minutes, I played the wind chimes, and students rotated to the next center. I was able to float and help people one on one as needed! Because the sound of the ukulele is pretty pleasant, and because one of the centers didn't involve playing, it wasn't super noisy in my room. It was also awesome to see kids teaching themselves, teaching each other, and working at a pace comfortable to them.

Have you ever tried ukulele centers? Feel free to comment below, and happy teaching!

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