It’s November, which means it is time for Native American Music! I have compiled a unit utilizing 5 Native American folk songs. These songs come from 5 varying tribes all over the United States. Within the unit there is cultural information for each tribe that can be incorporated into the lessons.
In the past I have used this unit in different ways. I have chosen songs for the entire grade level to do (4th grade usually) throughout the month. We do 1 song every lesson or 2 depending on how intricate the instrument parts are. I also incorporate listening, dances, and stick games into my lessons throughout the month. Another way I have done it, was to create a mini-performance out of the various songs. I taught 1 class 1 song, as well as the dances, listening, and stick games. Then we also researched that tribe a little more in depth. Toward the end of the month I got the entire grade level together to share their songs with each other. I had some students create speaking parts out of the research they had done. Both ways were productive and allowed the students to experience various Native American cultures.
For each song there are Orff arrangements that vary in difficulty. Some of the songs have a basic steady beat accompaniment, while others have 3-4 parts that go with them. I hope that you find some use for these songs in your classroom. You can find the unit on my Teachers Pay Teachers page: Native American Music Unit