Musical Transitions?

One of my bloggy BFF's Gina from Third Grade Tidbits and I were texting about how our kids transition during our stations. In the past I've used bells, the weird magic want thing from the teacher store that I wish I'd thought of because it's basically a bent hanger for $10, and the timer beeping.

But c'mon! That's no fun! This year I've put lots of fun ringtones onto my iPhone and I use the timer on the iPhone for math and reading stations! When the timer goes off and the song starts my kids clean up their station and move on while dancing....and singing....usually into pencils. And maybe I'm doing that too! Why not be silly and have fun? Today we tried Don't Worry Be Happy and collectively decided it didn't have a very good tune to boogie to so it's off the list. 

Her are our top five hits for transitions:
1. Don't Stop Believing by Journey
2. Boogie Shoes by KC & The Sunshine Band
3. Dallas Theme Song- because it's such an awesome show! No words, but high boogie factor!
4. Footloose by Kenny Loggins!
5. Ho Hey by the Lumineers

In December we danced like Charlie Brown characters to the Lucy and Linus song! 

As soon as the music stops I'm starting my next small group and I expect my kids to be at their station or almost there. We mean business in first grade! My kids know the expectation and we don't want to go back to boring old timer sounds so they get started on their next station right away. It's a good break for all of us.

* I TRIPLE DOG DARE y'all to try it in your classrooms!*

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  1. Ooh! What a fabulous idea! And I like the songs you are using, too! I am so going to give that a try!

    Primary Inspired

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  3. This is SO something I could try tomorrow! I have always used music in my transitions, but I have used super cheesy baby songs, like Wheels on the Bus and Jack Be Nimble. I have them all on my computer and play them through my SMARTBoard speakers. Why haven't I thought of using the timer on my iPhone? I used it for my AIMSWeb testing, never thought to use it with ringtones for transitions. Thanks for the great idea!
    My First Love

  4. I wish I had read this a few months ago!! Going to start it tomorrow!!! AWESOME idea!!

  5. Love it! We do the Jeopardy theme for center clean up in our Kindergarten class. I've also realized that if we do a "wiggle song" during a transition time students most a lot faster. They don't want to be cleaning up if they could be dancing! Our favorite wiggle song is "Who Let the Dogs Out" from youtube. No, it's not academic, but it's about 3 minutes long and they are required to move the entire time, they are usually winded when it's over. :)

  6. That is SO much better than the old bell ring! Wishing I had some sort of timer app on my phone (no iphone, only android) because I LOVE being silly and I love music. Any suggestions? I would def try it if I could!

    For the Love of First Grade

    1. I'm not familiar with Android phones at all, but can you use the ringtones on your Android? Does it have a timer on it?

  7. Where do you download your songs from? I would love to try this. My kids would love it.

    1. Lindsey- I just purchase ringtones off of iTunes. They're so inexpensive so even if we get tired of one it's no biggie!

  8. Do you play the entire song as their transition time? Thanks! This sounds like a great idea, because our transition time is what we're trying to improve this quarter.

    1. Veronica- since I just use the ringtones I think it's at most 30 seconds. Some days I have to let the ringtone play in its entirety twice. But because the kids know the transition is short they really get a move on and clean up and hustle to their next station!

  9. I love this idea, and just thought I'd share that we actually had a Christmas story moment at school this year while I was out for the day at a meeting. One of our lovely kinders dared another to lick the flag pole when it was 2 degrees with -19 windchill. Lets just say the results were not pretty! I thought my teamates were making it up until I talked to our custodian who had to clean blood off the flag pole for the first time in 20 years....So sad for my little friend, but I bet he will NEVER cave into another dare!

  10. I love this idea and have been using it with my little Kinders this year. We play "I Like To Move It, Move It" to transition from one activity to the next. Once the song starts they have to clean up whatever they are working on and "move it" to the next activity. Works like a charm :)

    I am so glad I have found your cute blog and am now following along!


  11. Girl! I don't know how I never saw this post! I seriously have to try this. I just have to decide which songs I want to use :)
    Third Grade Tidbits

  12. Love it, I use music all the time with my students. My iPhone has more music for my students than for me on it! Sad, right! :-)


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