The chaos of pandemic-year teaching sure compelled me to streamline my assessments! When working with early childhood classes, a lot of the learning is focused around contrasts in four main concepts: duration (long and short), tempo (fast and slow), dynamics (loud and quiet), and pitch (high and low). But assessments were time-consuming. 

Now I use these simple assessment sheets. They have the musical terms, but also clear graphics that make them accessible for students regardless of reading ability or language barriers. Also, they are open-ended so I can make the musical examples in any number of ways. They can be easy, or they can be really challenging. I can even switch it up as I go through: If I see that the first examples are too easy, I can make them harder as we go along. 

I can provide the examples with my voice, with an instrument, or with a recording. I’ve even created videos for each worksheet, so now I can set it up with an iPad when we do centers. 

OR I can leave it with a non-music sub!!

Getting students used to listening for one aspect of the music is crucial, but even with something this simple, I like to put things into a musical context. For each musical concept, there is a video available on YouTube. Just hand each student a sheet, and press play! As students listen, they can describe what they hear by choosing from one of the musical “opposites”.

These simple worksheets make a quick and easy pre-assessmentformative assessment and summative assessment. You can even use them for all three to compare and clearly see the students’ progress! 

And if you want more details, and the worksheets, be sure to check it out during the TeachersPayTeachers back-to-school sale, August 3-4!

What are some ways you have streamlined your assessments this year?

Easy assessment of music concepts—even for a sub!
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