Using iMovie to Turn you Students into Music Video Stars!

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Project Background

We read a nonfiction story titled Ants in reading. An exciting addition to our classroom was an ant farm this week. On Day 4 in the Harcourt Trophies lesson plan students sing “The Ants Go Marching”, and are engaged in some phonemic awareness activities using words from the song including identifying rhyming words. I thought this song was the perfect opportunity to tie in music, art, math and literature.2013-09-20 13.20.10

Costume Design

I downloaded mask templates from Terminix Kid’s Corner, and I copied them on red, black, yellow, and orange construction paper. Students assembled the masked. I helped them size the mask to fit their head.

Lights! Camera! ACTION!

I filmed students singing and marching to the first five verses of “The Ants Go Marching” using the video recorder on my iPad. I filmed these segments in 5 different clips. We filmed in several different locations on our school campus, including outside, on the steps and in the hallway. Students had some difficult staying in straight lines, so next year I think I would have students link arms while marching. Then I randomly selected 5 students by picking their names out of my Popsicle Stick Cup to film in short clips acting out the parts of the song. I had one pretend to “suck her thumb” for the first verse. For verse two I had a student “tie her shoe”. For the third verse I had student pretend to “stop and climb a tree”. For verse four I had the student “shut the door” and for the fifth verse I had a student pretend to swim for “take a dive”.

Editing with iMove iPad App
Once I had the clips recorded I was able to import the clips into my iMovie app on my iPad. I split the clips of the students marching when we sang “and the little one stops” and I inserted the clips of the individual students, tying shoe, shutting the door etc. I used a cross fade transition between clips. Once I finished putting the clips in the right order, I silenced the audio on the clips so we could record a better track (without my beautiful signing voice)!

Collaborating with the Music Teacher
Our music teacher was eager to collaborate with me on this project, and she taught the song to students in music class. The next week we gathered students around the piano, and they sang while she played. I recorded the audio in iMovie. Once I had the new audio clip, I had to do some minor adjustments in the length of the video clips so they would correspond properly. From there I saved the video to my phone, and uploaded to my Dropbox.com account. Then I was able to post the video on my class Edmodo website. Unfortunately, I found out that the video was too big to post to my Kidblog (the downside to having a free account).

The video turned out super cute, and the kids had a blast making it! Out of respect for my students privacy, I will not be sharing it here. You will have to take my word for it! I would highly recommend using the iMovie app; it was very easy to use!

How do you use songs to teach concepts in your classroom?

Coming Soon:  “Acting Out” Story Problems using PowerPoint