Most music teachers know how to adapt very well to changing curriculum, but administrators do not always know how to accept music teachers adapting curriculum and planning to their teaching style.
I have been teaching in schools that utilize Understanding by Design and other backwards planning models for planning and the templates for planning were non-negotiables for all staff.
As I transformed into an Orff-based teacher I found that most of the templates did not fit well with the process. Not every class ends in assessment, some objectives take a day or two to master, I don't use exit tickets all the time, and so on. I was fortunate enough to have instructional coaches who were open to me modifying the planning templates to fit my style of teaching but still emphasizing the different steps and effective lesson should have.
I stumbled through many different formats for about two years. I found myself week after week re-writing lessons for songs and units that I teach in the same way (with small modifications) every time. When I had to start submitting lesson plans I found my time taken up again re-writing processes that I do over and over.
Last summer I sat down and wrote out detailed lessons for as many songs, dances, and units that I could. I utilize this template with a calendar that has simple notes such as "Singing in Rounds Day 4" and would send the plans for each activity and the calendar to my instructional coach so when I was observed they knew what I was working on. If a class was taking more or less time on an activity I would change the calendar and send it to my coach. Such a time saver!
First you will notice:
Quotes by Kodaly and Orff. I added these to my plans first as a reminder to myself of how and why I needed to teach music the way I do but also unintentionally as a reminder to my administrators that how I approach general music looks incredibly different from a traditional classroom and mastery in music sometimes looks different than math mastery.
I include in my lesson planning:
Guided Practice/Independent Practice
In the template I give a summary of what I normally include in each step. I intentionally took out Independent Practice as its own individual step because sometimes I have it, sometimes I do not, or sometimes it goes hand in hand with the guided practice or assessment.
This is an editable document. That I will update periodically so be sure to check back for updates.
General Music Activity Planning Template
by Emily Blinn
is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License