Teaching music is far more fun and enjoyable when the content is linked to real-life events, people and music.

We want our students to be motivated and engaged during lessons, and I've found this the best way to achieve it.

I started creating the January music lesson resources with the months of the year in mind – the addition of resources is an ongoing process, but this is what I've put together so far for the first month of the year.


1 JANUARY is New Year's Day

The New Year provides an excellent opportunity to plan a lesson around reflection on the past year's journey and set goals for the year ahead.

The blog post "Goal Setting in the Music Classroom" outlines a lesson on setting goals.

You can also download a PDF file copy by clicking the image below.


4 JANUARY is National Trivia Day

Free illustrations of Did you know

Make good use of this day by having a 'trivia' game based on a concept recently taught. It's a great formative assessment strategy.

The USEFUL TRIVIA site has some great general music trivia questions.


8 JANUARY is Elvis Presley's Birthday

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on 8 January 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi. His family was very poor. In the late 1940s, the Presleys moved to Memphis, Tennessee. 

Elvis was known as the King of Rock and Roll because he was one of the first musicians to sing and play rock music. 

Some of Elvis Presley's hits include "Don't Be Cruel," "All Shook Up," and "Hound Dog." He released his first number-one record, "Heartbreak Hotel," in 1956. 

Here's a short 8-minute video about Elvis, specially made for kids. 

MTR has easy-to-use, fun educational resources to help introduce Elvis and his music to your students. See them all by clicking the thumbnails below.
ELVIS PRESLEY BUNDLE - Music Activities for Middle and Jr   ELVIS PRESLEY Music Listening Activities and Biography Res  ELVIS PRESLEY Music Word Search and Biography Research Act  ELVIS PRESLEY Interactive Listening and Research Activities        


13 JANUARY is Melba Liston's Birthday

Do your students know who this fine musician is? Ask them to guess what brass instrument she played.

Here is a good video showing her playing the trombone, 

which would work well with the Music Listening and Research Foldables.  

Music Black History Month: Melba Liston Music Listening


15 JANUARY is National Hat Day

Free vector graphics of Hat

Use this day for a rhythm activity with the younger students.

Have a list of names of different hats where the students can see them. Create a 'rhythm sort' activity.

Here is an example of one I created. Grab your FREE copy by clicking the image below.


15 JANUARY (2024) is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Free vector graphics of Mlk

Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on 15 January 1929. He led the Civil Rights Movement in the United States.

King used nonviolent, or peaceful, protests to get equal rights for African Americans. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

MLK Day provides the opportunity to create a listening lesson based on songs with a message of peace and freedom. 

This ready-to-go resource provides question sheets (with answers provided) for SIX songs appropriate for a theme of peace and freedom.  

Music Listening: Music Analysis Worksheets for SIX Songs A

There are also MLK RHYTHM and PITCH RESOURCES! They are available in three versions - PRINT, TpT EASEL DIGITAL and GOOGLE SLIDES - giving you flexibility and choice!

MLK Jr. Day Music Rhythm Worksheets - Match the Rhythm to   MLK Day Music Activities - Music Note Values - Complete th  Martin Luther King Jr. Day Music Activities - Treble Clef   Martin Luther King Jr. Day Music Activities - Bass Clef No  

CLICK HERE to have a PLAYABLE PREVIEW of a deck of BOOM cards!

MTR has soooo many activities covering several music concepts to fit this theme! You can check them all out below.
Martin Luther King Jr. Music  Lesson Activities - 12 Music  Martin Luther King Jr. Music Lesson Activities -  Music Co  Martin Luther King Jr. Music Coloring Pages: 12 Music Colo  Martin Luther King Jr. Music Coloring Pages: 12 Color by M                   



Download the 'January Teaching Opportunities and Resources' as a PDF to keep in your files for quick access. 

CLICK here for your copy.

See PART 2 of this blog post. 

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