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Pizza Man, Pizza Man | Music Lesson Plan (Composition)

from the Lesson Zone


Grade 2-4


Students will compose in groups with simple rhythms/pizza toppings to complete the Pizza Man, Pizza Man rap, and then perform their piece with non-pitched percussion instruments. This lesson is designed to fulfill Standard #4 of the National Standards for Music: Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines, and Standard #8: Understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts.


Pizza Man, Pizza Man | Music Composition Worksheet
Non-Pitched Percussion Instruments


Step 1
Ask students, "Who knows what a composer does? Correct. A composer organizes the sounds and the silences of the music we hear every day. Who thinks they are big enough to be a composer?

Step 2
Tell students, "Today we will be composing our own music to complete a rap called Pizza Man, Pizza Man. The first part is already composed. Your job is to finish it.

Step 3
Tell students, "Before we begin we need to review a few rhythms." Write the rhythms from the Pizza Man, Pizza Man worksheet on the white board one by one, and clap them with the class as you go. Review rhythms by asking individual students to clap them for the class.

Step 4
Tell students, "For this activity you will be in groups of two or three. When I say 'Go', please pick up one worksheet and a pencil for your group and find a place in the room to sit. 'Go'"

Step 5
Tell students, "At the top of your worksheet there is a connect-the-dot activity. As a group, speak the pizza toppings to one of the rhythms opposite the pizza toppings to figure out which one works best. Connect the dots. Continue in the same way for the rest of the pizza toppings." Younger classes may benefit by having you speak the pizza toppings one at a time as a class, and more closely guide the rhythm selection.

Step 6
Tell students, "Let's check your work." Show students the correct answers from the white board.

Step 7
Tell students, "We just completed the first part of composing a piece. We heard a rhythm in our head, and figured out what it was. The next step is to put all these little ideas into one big idea."

Step 8
Tell students, "When I say 'Go', I would like to have you work as a group to decide which order the pizza toppings should be placed in, and then write the notes and the lyrics on the staff following the music that is already written for us. 'Go'"

Step 9
Tell students, "Let's learn the first part of the Pizza Man, Pizza Man rap, and then I'll give you a chance to practice the first and second parts together with your group." Teach in two measure sets until students are proficient. Provide students with opportunities to work as a group. As they practice, pass out non-pitched percussion instruments to each group.

Step 10
Tell students, "I'm going to give you one more minute to practice your version of the rap with the percussion instruments that I placed next to you. Then, we'll listen to them as a class.

Step 11
Tell students, "Let's hear how your compositions sound. The group with the most impressive composition, performance and notation will have the opportunity to perform for your homeroom teacher." Take volunteers, and listen group by group as time permits.

Step 12
Perform for the homeroom teacher.


Students may elect to add simple ostinato on a bass xylophone/metallophone to their composition for a added texture.