New! The Trick-or-Treat! rhythm game is FUN way to start out your lessons for 4-6 weeks around Halloween time. It’s so easy: just pull out the cards you’ve assembled, and put some candy or treats in a bowl. Your students will be thrilled to see you present this game every year. Your students will have a blast — and you’ll see their rhythm skills improve.
How does the game work?
Playfully inform your student that you have a bowl of treats — but that they must EARN their treat by playing a rhythm game. :) Choose the appropriate deck for your student (Levels 1-4). Explain to your student: There are TRICK cards and there are TREAT cards. When a TREAT card is drawn, the game is over and it’s time to choose a treat. When a TRICK card is drawn, the student performs the rhythm on the card and then draws again.
All four levels of cards contain rhythms that are in duple meter and triple meter. The rhythms get progressively more advanced with each level. The easiest rhythms contain only quarter notes and eighth notes (or, macrobeats and microbeats, to use MLT-based terminology). The more advanced levels contain sixteenth-note combinations, ties, rests, and upbeats. The leveling information is detailed clearly for the teacher on a cheat sheet.
The first week you present the game to your students, I recommend starting with Level 1 (even if they can handle more advanced rhythms). Over following weeks, you can bump up to the next levels or stick with the same level if more practice is needed. This approach really works! You’ll be impressed with how your students do from week to week.
Students will draw an average 4 or 5 rhythm cards before drawing a TREAT card. However, if you decide you’d like the game to last longer, simply remove one of the TREAT cards from the deck.
Here are a couple of game variations I use with my students:
- YOUNG BEGINNERS: Instead of asking the student to read the rhythms, ask them to echo after you. This is so good for developing their ears and preparing for reading down the road!
- SMALL GROUPS: Play the game normally, except ask the entire group to help perform the rhythm cards drawn by each individual.
Buy the 45-page Trick-or-Treat! PDF download now, and here’s what you’ll get:
- Introductory letter to the teacher
- Leveling cheatsheet and tips for gameplay
- Instructions for assembly (this is a digital product; meaning, you must print and assemble the game yourself)
- Card holders for each of the four levels
- Four levels of rhythm cards (160 cards total)
Click here to read the original blog post announcement about this resource.