I love using workstations in my classroom. I wanted to share a list of some of my favorites, but I think I got a little carried away. Here are almost 100 workstations that I love with links and explanations. Enjoy!
Color by Note These activities are fun for students an allow them to show what they know by coloring their answers. Some of these activities may take more than 10 minutes.
Writing Prompts Perfect for workstations! Students write an answer, a paragraph or a story based on the prompts. Use regular paper or Chrome books and Google Classroom!
Composer Coloring Sheets Although I often use these while listening to music, they work great in a workstation. Even the big kids enjoy this!
Primary Writing Prompts Younger students that may be pre-readers, need to be able to express their ideas with words and pictures. These primary writing prompts provide space for both.
My Book of Mary Poppins. As a review after we have watched the movie (or portions of it), we color these books that highlight some key items in the movie.
Instrument Coloring Sheet This is probably pretty obvious. Coloring sheets for instruments or for groups of instruments in their families are great for workstations.
Music Memory Book This is best when used at the end of the school year. I usually have students work on the books for about half of a class period. Next class, they finish them as one of the stations that I have set up.
Roll and Cover worksheets Easy peasy. Print and set in a workstation with some crayons and some dice. Actually I use one BIG die and the group shares. Fun!
I find that it is really difficult to complete a composing project in the small amount of time that students have in a workstation. So, instead of doing an entire project, these centers allow students to compose by arranging. Take a closer look:
Body Percussion Composing
Dynamics and Tempo
Candy Corn -Dynamics This seasonal workstation is simple to do. Students complete a candy corn puzzle that contains a dynamic term, symbol and definition. Then, they copy that information to a chart.
A Dab of Music Learning - Dynamics and Symbols I love dabbers and so do my students! The set focuses on dynamics and music symbols. I usually plan 2-3 worksheets for one center.
Dynamics Punch Cards I have quite a few hand held hole punchers and they come in handy for this station! Take a closer look by clicking on the link.
A Dab of Music Learning- Instruments Another dabber activity set. This set focuses on instrument families and provides many opportunities for students to show what they know.
Instrument Matching Game Use pictures of instruments or print this set to use to have students match pictures of instruments with the names of instruments.
Mystery Instruments One of my favorite activities. I tell students to be sneaky detectives and not tell any other groups what instrument they think is the mystery instrument. They fill out a "case file" that records the clues they discover. At the one of the center rotations I open the bag and show the class. Using a different instrument, you could do this many times.
Clip It-Instruments Edition Just add clothespins to these cards for an engaging workstation that reinforces instrument names and simple rhythm patterns.
Read It, Trace It, Stamp It This station requires some letter stamps and an ink pad. Get the washable kind of ink pads. Trust me.
Dip Tray Family Sort Using an inexpensive dip tray from the dollar store, this station is a breeze to set up. Read more about it.
Instrument Coloring Sheets Use these to reinforce your unit on instrument families.
Instrument Family Punch Cards Which of these instruments is in the brass family? Punch your answers with a hole puncher. Fun assessment.
My Book of Instruments These take a little bit of time to copy and assemble but are great for small group work or workstations. Do one family at a time or all instruments at the same time.
Instrument Investigations This activity takes 15- 20 minutes so you may need to plan a day of longer workstations to make this go well.
Misspelled Instrument Punch Cards I think it is important that students learn to spell instrument names correctly. I don't always feel like I have enough time during instruction, so I love adding these punch cards to a workstation rotation.
Yes! You can do a movement center! Set clear expectations and add music (or not) and these activities work so great in stations. Student love them too.
Creative Movement/Freeze Dance
Non-Pitch Percussion Instruments
Playing instruments is one of my students' favorite workstations and I understand why! These station sets make playing instruments a pleasant and organized experience. No, really.d
Rhythm Stick Reading Station
Rhythm Instrument Reading Station
Triangle Reading Station
Hand Drum Reading Station
Maraca Reading Station
Tambourine Reading Station
Cowbell Reading Station
A Dab of Music Learning - Intervals These dabber activities are great for upper grades.
A Dab of Music Learning -Pitches Drilling pitch names doesn't have to be boring. These dabber activities are designed to be completed quickly. That makes them perfect for workstations.
Treble Clef Twister There are many ways to do this, but essentially it requires a staff on the floor. This could be one that you create with tape, one you already have on a rug or one that you draw on a plain shower curtain. The link will take you to a sheet that I use as a spinner.
Musical Mneumonics Another way to drill those pitch names is to have students create their own musical mnemonics.
Bottle Cap Staff I have collected hundreds of bottle caps from 2-liters of soda, water bottles, etc... They make perfect note heads. Take a closer look to see how it could work in a center.
Bottle Cap Pitch Sort I also took some of those bottle caps and modge-podged some staves and notes on them. Students sort them into piles based on their letter name.
- Yeah. They are boring, but neccessary. It seems that kids hardly ever use them anymore so maybe they will find them to be a novelty.
Worksheets I know. It sounds boring, but these worksheets are attractive and easily completed in the time that students have in a workstation.
Swat the Staff Create a staff on the wall with tape. Two students stand next to it, another calls out a letter from the musical alphabet. The first one to swat the correct line or space wins!
Pitch Match Ups Basically flashcards, but you match words spelled out by notes on the staff to the words. Lots of fun designs.
Bop It/Simon Says
Melodic retention. :-)
I almost always use my reading area as a stop in the workstation rotation. Here are some links that might help you out with your reading area.
Classroom Library Need some ideas for your reading area? Check out this huge list!
Books for Primary Classes This is a great list of books that your primary classes will love.
Men and Women of Jazz Print and laminate the pieces of this bulletin board and include them at a workstation. They contain short passages and students have time to read more than one during their center rotation.
Meet the Composers Similar to the Men and Women of Jazz, this bulletin board set can become a reading station too.
Magazines - Do you subscribe to Music Alive or Music Express? Leave a few copies in a crate and set it in the floor. Instant workstation!
A Dab of Music Learning - Rhythm Dab. Dab. Dab dab dab. Note values, musical math and more in this set.
Drawing Notes-lap packs This link takes you to a blog post about Lap Packs. I've used them with Kindergarten through high school. For the littles, it is a great way to practice drawing notes.
Swat the Rhythm We like swatting things in my classroom. The link takes you to a few sets that I have created. You can do the same activity with flashcards. Lay them on the floor. One student claps a rhythm that is on one of the cards. The first student to swat the right answer, wins a point.
Rhythm Blocks Duplos and legos make great music workstations! Check out this blog post to learn more.
Craft Stick Rhythms - Take craft sticks and use them to make quarter notes and barred eighth notes. Students clap their "compositions" and then make more.
Roll and Cover Roll and cover activities allow students to reinforce their knowledge of note names.
Musical Yahtzee From Layton Music, this activity is great for small groups or workstations. I laminate the score sheets when using them in workstations and add some music dice.
Noodle Notes. I love pool noodles! Learn about how to create noodle notes in this blog post.
Caterpillar Rhythms Construction paper circles or paper plates become caterpillar bodies in this activity. Add rhythm patterns or single notes on them and students build a caterpillar pattern. The longer, the better!
Play Dough Mats Laminate and just add play dough. Students learn about notes and symbols through play.
Don't Break the Ice -take a Don't Break the Ice game and draw different notes on each block (quarter, half, barred eighths, 4 16ths, etc....). Create a spinner with whatever note values you used. Students spin and the tap out one block with that note on it until somebody breaks the ice.
Add it Up Rhythm Cards Musical math! This freebie can be used in many ways.
Note Value Punch Cards This is another activity for hole punchers that can assess student knowledge.
Rap It Clap It Music Match It This is an old faithful workstation for me. Students match the syllables of themed words to simple rhythm patterns. Perfect for a workstation. I often do this activity with the whole group and use it in a workstation later.
Clip It Games Clip it games require students to match words with a rhythm pattern that most closely matches its
Rhythm Pins w/Paint Chips Cut the paint chips so that there are 4 boxes on them. Draw single beat notes or rhythms on clothespins. Students pin a measure on the paint chips, clap and repeat.
Candy Land (note differentiating) Instead of using Candy Land for just color recognition, add music symbols, notes, pitches, etc... to the colors. Fun!
Musical Jenga - Check out this awesome idea from the Music K-8 Idea Bank for creating a musical Jenga game.
Tracing Sheets Get acquainted with notes and their values with these tracing sheets. Great for younger learners.
Music Math Houses I laminate these and use dry erase markers. Students add up all of the musical math problems in colorful houses and check their own answers.
Note Knacks. These are great! I have one student create a four beat measure and the others recreate it with the Note Knacks. They are a little pricey, but worth it.
Dot Composing This is a simplified way to compose using quarter notes, barred eighths or 4 16th notes. Read more about it in this blog post.
Rhythm Blocks Kelly Parrish from Rhythmically Yours makes these amazing rhythm blocks. I use them for rhythmic dictation. At a workstation, one student secretly creates a rhythm pattern and then claps it for their group. The other students recreate that with their rhythm blocks.
Poison Rhythms. Using a lap top or table, I have students play poison rhythm just they way we do as a whole group. FUN! The link will take you to several different versions.
Vocal Explorations -Vocalizations are a few workstation and let students be a little silly and creative.
Puppets and Books
Use puppets and some Wee Sing books at a station. The goal? SING!
Sticky Note Singing
Take a song that you are working to have memorized. Cover part of it with a sticky note and try singing it. Add another and try again. Let your neighbor add the next one and try again. It is a fun way to work on memorization and to get students singing at their center.
ABC Chart This one is easy peasy to create. Check out the blog post for a simple description of this activity.
Singing Sticks from Music Mom These little singing sticks are great tools to reinforce Solfege or at my school to reinforce the pitch numbers of a major scale. After using them with classes for a while, they can easily practice in workstation groups to sing patterns.
Singing Rocks I love my singing rocks! They really allow for improvisation and creativity. After I have modeled this activity in class, students are able to do it in a workstation. It is great to listen to them sing their imaginations out!
Blob Chorus - Ear Training This is an app that is so fun that students don't realize they are learning! Hurray!
Xyloba Engineer a marble run that plays a song with this awesome set!
Found Sounds Collect some junk. Put it in a box. Let students become detectives, inventors and musicians.
Stikbot Animation Animate a dance. Choreography and green screen technology can create some amazing videos.
Spec Drums There are so many ways to use Spec Drums in workstations: exploration, composition, practicing simple folk songs and more!
Ozobots Code these little robots to show the tempo changes of a piece of music. Use the workstation time to have them practice creating paths that change speeds (or tempos!).
Makey Makey My students always fight to be the first group at this station. I add the instructions, a Makey Makey invention set and some random things for students to experiment with like fruit, play dough, hot dogs...whatever. Students use these items to play a keyboard or drum on the computer. I definitely recommend this activity!
There are SO many great music apps out there. Here are a few that I think work really well in workstations.
Music Interest Inventory Punch Cards This is a fun addition to workstation rotations at the beginning of the school year. You can learn a great deal about your students.
Talk About Tunes I mean, they are going to talk anyway. Why not make it musical?
Carnival of the Animals -Use a day of workstations to review Carnival of the Animals.
Peter and the Wolf - This set lets you expand your Peter and the Wolf unit in some fun and creative ways.
Star Spangled Banner I use this every singing year with 3rd or 4th grade. It is a great way to learn more about our national anthem, help students memorize it, learn the vocabulary and more. I always plan a couple of class periods to do all of the stations in this kit.
Whew! What a list! If you loved these ideas, PIN THIS for later!