I like to learn new things.  I am primarily a singer and as a result, I am generally more comfortable with performances that deal with singing.  Using instruments for performance is something I’ve been working up to….. Although my Orff training is limited to the classes I took in college (which I only sort of paid attention to) and a workshop here and there AND although I don’t claim to have any kind of deep understanding of the work, what I HAVE learned of the Orff approach is fitting in nicely with the way that I already practice my teaching as part of my study with the Richards Institute of Language and Research….Many of my ETM friends from around the country are also great Orff educators, so I’m sure they will let me know if I misunderstand, but as far as I can tell, these philosophies dovetail in their belief that a formal label is only as valid as the experience it represents. Basically, LOTS of experience first, then when labeling is necessary it becomes a simpler matter because the quality of the experience is rich.

This year as I was developing the idea of our 4th grade “informance” I wanted to use as many folk songs as I could that are a part of the ETM song experience game collection…. But I wanted to stretch my students as well as myself by trying to take the song experience games that we already know and love and adding accompaniment.

So when I went to TMEA I was on the hunt for good Orff resources.  I wanted resources that would help me find success without a lot of fuss despite my lack of formal Orff training.

Here are some of the resources that I found that I have really enjoyed.   This is probably my favorite… because for me, as someone who doesn’t quite think “Orff” ….. it provided a systematic support as we moved through each slide AND because the instructions are on each slide I didn’t have to refer back to the teaching manual….. it’s all right there.


Interactive Folksongs by Christi Cary Miller


Orff Source Collection This link takes you to the Music in Motion Website.  Volume 2 and Volume 3 are easily available from several sources…. Volume 1 is harder to find online.

While at TMEA I purchased Volume 1 and Volume 2 and am now using arrangements from both volumes to accompany ETM songs…..

Which leads me to my primary source for the majority of the songs I use in my classroom and in this “informance”.

Often, when students know several of the ETM songs, we will put them all together as a set of partner songs.  It takes time to play the children into this experience, but it is always worth the time and effort.  One of my classes took the partner songs that they have sung and added their own instrumentation made up of yet another partner song……

Register for a Colloquium or Winter Course TODAY!

I have purposefully not included a link directly to a purchase page for this book because the book by itself is not nearly as useful as the classes themselves.  After all, if your only experience with a football game was the coaches playbook, you might not ever be inspired to watch an actual game….. If you are looking for a place of inspiration, information and insight, then a time of study with ETM is exactly what will meet your needs.  The link above will send you to all of the current course offerings.  If you decide to attend, please let me know!!!!

Organizing it all!

Because I was putting songs together from so many different sources, I copied the pages I needed, slipped them into page protectors, made notes about which classes had what responsibilities and then used my BIG post-it notes to remind myself of who was playing what.  The post-it notes are my working memory for the informance…..We are presenting our work on Thursday…..I’ll be sure and let you know how it goes



Please follow and like us: