Thursday, September 20, 2012

Tika Tika Tic Tac Toe

It's Tika Tika time 
(4 beamed 16th notes) 
in 3rd grade and we are busy practicing, chanting, singing and playing this fun rhythm!

While it's always an aim of mine to present tika tika in 2nd grade, I usually only have time to prepare this rhythm at the end of the 2nd grade year. Tika tika in early 3rd grade is what I usually do and it works well. 

Tika Tika Tic Tac Toe is one of those simple games that I always think the students will scoff at and then they love playing it and request it often. 
(I think it has to do with competition and the opportunity to throw things.)

All you need are nine cards of 4 beat rhythms featuring tika tika, bean bags, and some floor space. My rhythms are extracted from the tika tika songs the 3rd graders have been learning since school began. 

I set out the nine rhythm cards in a tic tac toe board formation on the floor. Students are separated into two teams and sit on the bar lines of the floor staff. (I have very large staff on my floor which functions as a seating arrangement when we're not in a circle. My floor staff is made with black velcro, ordered from a PE catalog.) The teams are designated the "red" team or the "blue" team, (those are our school colors.) A student stands below line E of the floor staff and chooses which rhythm card he is going to attempt. He chants the rhythm and the rest of the class repeats the rhythm. If he articulates the rhythm correctly, he can toss his team's color beanbag to claim that space. If the beanbag is touching the chosen card once it's landed, that team wins the space and their beanbag stays on the card. The opposing team then takes a turn.  The goal is for a team to get three spaces in a row.

This amazing simple game is a big hit with the students. There is individual and group practice of the new rhythm concept and we're working with rhythms from their song literature. I can think of several variations I could use to adjust the level of difficulty. To make it more challenging, the individual player must tap or clap the rhythm and his team has to identify which card was played. Another challenge could be the individual player must identify which song the rhythm is extracted from. (I would post the song titles on the board for students to refer to.) To make the game easier and more immediately successful, the teacher could chant the rhythm, the class echoes and then the individual player identifies which rhythm was played.

There are so many age-appropriate songs that incorporate tika tika.
Some of my students' favorite ti-ka t-ka songs:

  • Chicken on a Fencepost
  • In and Out Those Dusty Bluebells
  • Chanton Le Petit Moulin
  • Paw Paw Patch 
  • Tideo
  • Goodnight, Sleeptight

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