Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski | Free Music Lesson Plan (Canon)

from the Lesson Zone

Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski is a fun lesson that gets students engaged and working together to learn about and perform a simple canon.


Grade 2-6


Students will demonstrate an understanding of the musical form canon. This lesson is designed to fulfill Standard #1 of the National Standards for Music: Singing, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music; and Standard #6: Listening to, analyzing, and describing music.



'Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski' Music Lesson Plan (Canon)

Step 1
Teach the students the rhyme Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski.

Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski,
Do what I do after me.

Step 2
Tell students, "We will be performing Skittle, Skittle, Skittle, Ski as a canon. A simple canon is known as a round. Rounds that you have heard before include Row, Row, Row Your Boat and Frere Jacques. When you perform these melodies the first singer (leader) begins singing and then another singer (follower) begins singing with the same melody a measure or two later.

A more complex canon begins in the same way with the leader singing the melody, but the follower sings the melody in a different way. Changes might include a variation in the rhythm or a transposition (make higher of lower) of the melody.

Step 3
Teacher chants the rhyme. As the class echoes the rhyme, the teacher pats a four beat rhythm.

Example: Pat - Pat - Clap - Clap

The class repeats those four beats as the teacher moves on to another four beat pattern. The teacher follows with another four beat rhythm which is echoed by the students. A simple canon is created between the teacher and the students as the teacher's theme is repeated one measure later by the students.

When the students become skilled at performing this two-part canon, a third part may be introduced.

Suggested Sounds

Patsch - Pat left, right, or both thighs with hands. Pat cheeks for a different timbre.
Clap - Clapping hands together.
Snap - Snap fingers on right, left, or both hands.
Stomp - Striking left, right, or both feet on the floor. Change the surface for different sounds.
Finger Pop - Make a finger pop sound. (Place your index finger in your mouth, seal your lips around your finger, press your finger against inside of cheek until the seal is finally broken, and POP!)

Browse Best Seller Music Lesson Plans

Browse New Music Lesson Plans