Jedi Music

A Resource for the Beginning Elementary Music Teacher


Children's Literature for Music Ed: "Rock it, Sock it, Number Line"

"Rock it, Sock it,
Number Line!
Numbers and Veggies-
Party Time!"
"Rock it, Sock it, Number Line" by Bill Martin, Jr. and Michael Sampson has been on my son's book shelf since it was lovingly given to him by his preschool teacher back in 2007. This is a very silly book about veggies partying in the garden until they are finally made into vegetable soup. 

My very youngest group of special needs students work hard learning to count to ten.  To help with this skill, we use a song called "The Numbers Jump" (on a very old CD that I cannot find a link for online), and also Rachel Rambach's song "Counting Time", which we use constantly and adapt for the seasons and holidays.  "Rock it, Sock it, Number Line" is the newest "weapon" in my "arsenal" of supplements to help my students master counting to ten!  I recently adapted it for music class with great sucess!  Here is what I did:

  • First, review counting to ten, with the "Numbers Jump" and a version of "Counting Time".

  • Introduce the rhythm of the repeating rhyme for the story. Clap the rhythm first while chanting the rhyme, because if you give them the rhythm sticks first, they will be too excited to learn the rhyme!
  • Distribute rhythm sticks to all of the children and model correct handling of the sticks for safety.

  • Also, practice and incorporate signals for putting the sticks down (rest time), picking them up to play (ready time), and tapping them together safely (playing time).  If available, match up any paraprofessionals or aides with students who are going to struggle with safety and signals.

  • The children will put their sticks down for the beginning of the story.  Every time the numbers appear in the story, we will pick up our rhythm sticks and count aloud while tapping the sticks for that number.

  • Every time our repeating rhyme appears in the story, we will chant the rhyme and tap the sticks in rhythm.

  • Each time that a number appears in the story (which is often) we use our rhythm sticks to count up to that number.

  • This is also a good activity for regular education students in grades K-1. As the teacher, you know your students best, and can adapt the book and activity to their needs. Some students will not need the level of assistance that I have described.

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