Using Music to Energize, Engage, and get kids Excited about School!

Today I am linking up with Head Over Heels for Teaching to talk about a way that I spark student motivation!

Last week, I started something new in my classroom and I am LOVING it!

My students and I have started having a mini dance party every morning.

At my school, all of my kids wait outside until the bell rings, then I invite them into the classroom. As students enter the room, I have been playing fun, upbeat music. The kids LOVE dancing to the music as they come into the room. The best part is that it motivates them to be on time for school. Because if they are late, they miss the dance party!

At first, I was a bit hesitant to try out this idea because I thought that it might get my kids too excited. But it actually does the exact opposite. I have found that once the song ends, students are more ready to learn. My kids also know that by the time the song is over, they need to have their agendas open and book bins ready to go. This way, they have a task to complete while they dance 🙂

Some of our favourite songs to play include:
Happy – Pharrell Williams
Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
Stronger – Kelly Clarkson
What Makes You Beautiful – One Direction
Stereo Hearts – Gym Class Heroes
Good Feeling – Flo Rida
Best Day of My Life – American Authors
Love Runs Out- One Republic
Gagnam Style – Psy
We are Never Getting Back Together – Taylor Swift
Please Don’t Stop the Music – Rhianna
Dynamite – Taio Cruz
Life is a Highway – Rascal Flatts
I Got a Feeling – Black Eyed Peas
Twist and Shout – The Beatles
I Like to Move It –
Macarena – Los de Rios
YMCA – The Village People
Note: Always be sure to play the version with “clean lyrics”. If you search the name of the song in Google with “clean lyrics” a classroom friendly version should pop up!

After a few mornings of dancing, the strangest thing happened… I realized that I was a happier teacher! Sometimes mornings can be super stressful, it is nice to take a few moments to sing and dance. Plus, when 26 kids are smiling up at you, how could you possibly be in a bad mood?

Do you have any tricks for starting the day off on the right foot?
I would love to hear about your ideas in the comments 🙂

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