Music Symbol Swat | Free Music Lesson Plan and Game

from the Lesson Zone

Turn repetitious note name and rhythm review in a hilariously fun game with "Music Symbol Swat." Check out this free music lesson plan and grab the fly swatters!


Grade 3-5


Students will gain an understanding of music symbols. This lesson is designed to fulfill Standard #5 of the National Standards for Music: Reading and notating music.


White board
2 Fly Swatters
A List of Music Symbols

'Music Symbol Swat' Music Lesson Plan

Step 1
Place several music symbols on the board. Symbols placed on the board could include any or all of the following: bass clef, treble clef, time signature, whole note, half note, quarter note, eighth note, fermata, D.C. al Fine, D.S al Fine, the sign, etc.

Step 2
Review with the students what each symbol means.

Step 3
Divide the class into two teams and explain to the class that they will be playing a game called, Music Symbol Swat, which will help them to learn the music symbols that are on the board.

Step 4
Choose who is going to go first on each team and give them a fly swatter.

Step 5
Explain the game to the students:

The teacher gives the definition of a symbol that is on the board (ie. a symbol that tells a musician how many beats are in a measure).

After a few seconds to consider the correct answer, the teachers says, "Go", at which point the two holding fly swatters race to the board and place their swatter over the correct symbol.

The person who covers the correct symbol first with their fly swatter gets a point for the team. If neither player covers the correct symbol, then neither team receives a point.

Step 6
Pass the fly swatter to new players and continue to play the game until all team members have a chance to swat the correct answer.

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