Ok, so the kids aren’t paying attention. It’s been 5 hours of the same old academics with mixed results across the board. How about this? Throw a little guitar in there. It could be my personal standby old reliable This Land is Your Land of any number of a million others you have ready for them. Trust me, I’ve had a guitar in my classroom as an antidote for burnout, both teacher and child, and it works like gangbusters every time. If guitar isn’t your thing, try something else to break up the monotony once in a while. You’ll be encouraged because you’ll experience your kids in a new way, a restful, laid back way. Later, this may even translate into higher academics because they feel more comfortable taking risks.
If you can remember an old railroad song or anything you sang in school, the internet is your best friend for lyrics. The only thing cooler to kids than seeing you pulling your guitar up to the stool is getting fresh copies of lyrics passed out. You can do this “on the fly” or plan in advance. I’ve learned through trial and error that the “pre-planned” music times go the best but it helps to be set up for spontaneity. Bookmarks to children’s song sites help a lot. When you get the ones you like the best, paste those lyrics into a Word file and save them for future years. Children’s songs are timeless. Whatever your talent, try sharing it with your kids.