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Touchdown | Free Music Lesson Plan (Tempo/Math Activity)

from the Lesson Zone

Want to get your music students moving, smiling more, and make friends with their homeroom teacher? Touchdown is a lesson wrap-up activity that helps to develop steady beat and math skills - and kids get to jump around.


Grade 1-4


Students learn to keep a steady beat in a fun-filled activity, while drilling their math facts. This lesson is designed to fulfill Standard #7 of the National Standards for Music: Evaluating music and music performances.




Step 1
Tell students, "Let's play a game. It's called "Touchdown." To play you have to touch a certain number of body parts to the floor to show the answer to a math problem."

Step 2
Tell students, "During this game you will have to march to a steady beat. Sometimes I will play a beat on the drum at a slow tempo. Sometimes I will play a beat at a fast tempo. When I begin to play a steady beat on the drum, I would like for you to listen to the tempo, and then begin marching around the room to the beat. Let's have everyone stand up." Try several different tempos.

Step 3
Tell students, "It looks like you are ready to learn the rules for the game. As I told you before, you'll be showing the answer to a math problem by touching body parts to the floor. If I asked you to show me 2 + 2, you would say the answer out loud and then touch four body parts to the floor. To show the answer four, you can use two feet and two hands - 1 - 2 - 3 - 4. Demonstrate. Let's try an addition problem with bigger numbers, like 3 + 7. To answer this math problem you can count your hand as one, or count each finger, giving you up to ten body parts on your hands. To show ten you can use two feet, your seat, two elbows, and five fingers, 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10." Demonstrate.

Step 4
Tell students, "We're ready to play. Let's have everyone stand up. When you hear the drum, figure out how fast or slow the tempo is and then begin to march around the room." Play 12-16 beats on the drum and stop. Call out a math fact. Wait for the answer. Play again.

Step 5
This game is fun for about 7-8 rounds. On the last round, ask the students to add 0 + 0. It's fun to see how creative they are in trying to touchdown zero. If they aren't sure what to do, start jumping up and down.