Fall in Ohio is beautiful! There are so many colorful things to see outside. I have a lot of trees in my backyard so it is a symphony of colors everyday once the leaves start to change. This means it is a great time of year for my lesson associated with the book “Leaf Man”. This is great for any grade level, but I use it especially with my first graders!
We begin by reading the book. Throughout the book I have the students help me with the phrase “A Leaf Man’s got to go where the wind blows”. I write it on the board so they can see the words better, and that helps with the next step. After reading through the book the creating begins (you can do these steps in this order or change it around, the outcome remains the same!)
Singing: Using that repeated phrase students help to find a way to sing the sentence using So and Mi. We practice a few versions and then settle on a final one.
Movement: Showing a picture from the book, students pick a leaf shape they like. Students then create that shape on the floor of the room. The teacher plays a gentle breeze sound on an instrument ( I chose to “scratch” on my hand drum). Students then move their bodies to match. You can experiment with different speeds of the wind and have the students respond accordingly.
Instruments: The teacher can demonstrate the scratching sound on the drum as an example, but also ask students what other instruments might make good wind sounds. Students can pick a couple options for their wind instruments. Before putting it all together, practice the difference on the instruments between the gentle breeze and the high winds!
Putting it all Together: I allow my students to help determine the “form” of the piece. We decide what parts are going to start and the speed of the wind. You can also just choose for them how the song should go, but it does give them a sense of ownership if you let them decide and just give some helpful “teacher tips” along the way.
When I did this with my first graders, each class was relatively the same but also had their own unique takes on the process. To get a FREE copy of my lesson plan check it out on my Teachers Pay Teachers store: LEAF MAN
Here is an example of what one of my classes came up with: