Upward and Downward Motion

Upward and Downward Motion

Kelly M. Prior
[email protected]
Anna McCabe Elementary School, Smithfield RI

TI:ME Technology Areas Addressed:

Electronic Musical Instruments




General Music


electronic keyboard
MIDI Interface


40 Minutes

Prior Knowledge and Skills:

Students understand the concept of steady beat
Students can recognize the changes in pitch
Students have basic knowledge of the different sounds of instruments
Student can play xylophone

NAfME Standards of 1994 Addressed:

NAfME Standards of 1994: Singing, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
NAfME Standards of 1994: Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.

NAfME 2014: Performing 

NAfME Standards of 1994 Listening to, analyzing and describing music.
NAfME Standards of 1994: Evaluating music and music performances.

NAfME 2014: Responding 


silver burdett grade 1 teachers edition
silver burdett grade 1 student books
silver burdett grade 1 CD
cd player
xylophone and mallet


1. Students will be able to identify upward and downward motion (higher and lower) through singing.
2. Students will be able to identify upward and downward motion by creating movements to demonstrate higher and lower.
3. Students will demonstrate upward and downward motion by playing the xylophone and electronic keyboard.


1. Introduce lesson (up/downward) by playing the xylophone and asking students to identify what they hear(different sounds) 2 min.
2. Introduce the concept of upward/downward and show that as each note is played it will sound either higher or lower. (As I play upward I move my hand in an upward motion etc.) 5 min.
3. Students will use their hands to demonstrate whether they hear the notes moving upward or downward. 2 min.
4. Students will practice playing upward and downward on xylophone. 5 min.
5. Introduce the song “Ebeneezer Sneezer” and teach the children to sing it. 5 min.
6. Children will stand and create body movements to identify the upward and downward motion in the song. 2 min.
7. Children will take turns playing upward/downward on keyboard as their classmates decide whether they hear upward or downward motion. 5 min.
8. Review with class difference between a flute and a violin. 2 min.
9. Demonstrate to children that although the sound of the instrument changes, both instruments can still play upward and downward. 2 min.
10. Continue to have children play up/downward on keyboard while classmates guess which direction is being played (up or down) and which instrument they hear (flute or violin). 10 min.


1. At the end of this lesson, I will assess my students understanding of upward and downward motion by observing them. The final step in this lesson is for each student to play up/down on the keyboard and be able to identify which they are playing.
2. At the end of this unit, students will be given a listening test and will need to identify upward and downward motion.

Follow Up:

A possibe follow-up lesson would be to introduce the woodwind family of instruments. Students would again play upward and downward on the keyboard but in addition would need to identify which woodwind instrument they heard.

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