Monthly Archives: July 2012

Calendar for 2012 – 2013

Binder Calendar

Today I am posting an academic calendar for the school year 2012-2013. This year I drew one with a school varsity look. It is sometimes hard to come with an idea that is good for girls and boys ages 5 to 18! I try to avoid flowers and girly things so that boys will like it. The calendar has no music symbols on it, so it can also be a general use calendar.

In the center I list all their events for the year, including “memorize by” dates, group lessons, holidays, recitals, festivals, and tests. It is so helpful for planning out dates to memorize sections. It also helps my older students to set priorities, and even to schedule around school projects.

I like to put the calendar in the see through plastic cover on their binder so they can refer to it easily. (I request they use that kind of binder. They are always on sale at the beginning of the school year, so I often buy a few extra). If you use a spiral notebook, cut around the white space and tape or staple it to the notebook.

I suggest you center your name, phone number, and email address under the header in Times Roman font to coordinate with the calendar.

If you have trouble printing on templates, read on. If not, I hope you enjoy my calendar!


  • Print the PDF of my graphic and set it aside. You will need to have Adobe Reader installed, which is a free program to download from Adobe’s website. For best results, use the latest version.
  • Draw an X on a plain piece of paper. Put it in your printer and make note of what side your printer prints. It may take several tries. I suggest you write it down to keep for future use.
  • Open Word or another word processing program. In “Page Set Up” set the left and right margins to 2.5 inches (6.4 cm), the top margin to 1.6 inches (4.1 cm), and the bottom margin to 1 inch (2.5 cm). If you are not in North America, I hope you know how to adjust for A4 paper.
  • Type your events and adjust the spacing and font size to fit.
  • Remembering what side your printer prints on, insert my graphic into your printer.
  • Print a test copy, adjust the margins, and try again if necessary.

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Magnetic Matching Game

Magnetic Matching Game

I found some Avery magnetic paper/sheets in my craft stash when I was spring cleaning, and I decided it was time to stop hoarding and actually use them. I have seen teachers use them on baking sheets, so I made them to fit one of mine. You can purchase the magnetic sheets at any office supply store, and they are fun but pricey. If you want to save money but still have them magnetic, print on card stock and glue magnet strips on the back, or just use it without being magnetic.

The printable is simple because I made it for a beginner. The student will match the note or symbol to the corresponding answer. It contains only rhythm note values from quarter notes to whole notes and very simple vocabulary words. I used some basic terms and a few challenge cards that can be used with young children. Keep the magnets in a zip lock bag and let the student play with it right before or after a lesson.

Notice I used the graphics from my ladybug series, so you can coordinate with that if you have a summer theme.


Print on magnetic 8 1/2 x 11 sheets such as Avery #3270. Notice that the entire sheet is a magnet, and you will cut out your magnet cards. Please read the instructions on the magnetic sheets carefully and print a test page on plain paper. Decide before hand which side to insert so your printer will print on the correct side.

There are 2 pages to print, and it is best to print each page separately. Under “Pages to Print”, select page 1, and if that prints correctly, select and print page 2. Cut along the dotted lines.

Students use the cards by matching the picture with a number or symbol to the corresponding answer, as you can see in my picture above. The colored graphics are just for fun and make the game more visually appealing. With little ones, I often make up stories as I do activities with them. Ask if they know why the ladybird likes dotted half notes!


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Our Buggy Friends – a Note Story

Our Buggy Friends

Note Stories! Some students love them and some hate them. The students who don’t like note stories sit there in silence when you give them one. I’ve noticed these are the students who don’t know notes very well! The students who love them kind of bounce up and down or at the very least give you some eye contact! Note stories are more fun in group lessons such as music summer camp. I know some of you are planning summer camps, so I hope this is in time for you to use.

Here are a few suggestions.

Do parts of this at the lesson, taking several weeks to complete it.  It will give you a good idea of how well your student is at note identification. But remember, just knowing notes does not turn a student into a good sight-reader. That is another skill set.

If you want to save paper, print out one copy and place it in a plastic sheet protector and use dry erase markers. Some teachers have a binder full of worksheets in sheet protectors to use with their students. You can also laminate it and use a dry erase marker.

If you have an old ladybug stuffed animal (such as my daughter’s Beanie Babies) around the house, use that to get some enthusiasm going. Children love themes!

Classroom teachers, this is the 3rd of a set of note stories with a nature theme, for some cross curriculum work. I have also posted note stories on bats and bunnies. Eventually I will post some more about other creatures. If you click on the link above, it will take you to my website, where you can also click on Bunny Basics and True Bat Facts.

This note story is too small to use on an iPad or Android tablet, but several posts ago I explained how to enlarge parts of this to make it big enough to use in Skitch. If you enlarge each sentence in landscape view as a separate part, you can do one sentence a week.

So you can see there are so many ways to use the material that you find on the internet!

I hope you enjoy my note story on ladybugs. What animal would you like me to feature next?


Filed under Teaching Business