Rhythm Band Pieces Can Be Scored

Cartoon

Illustration from The Rhythm Band Book by Ruth Etkin, New York: Sterling Publishing Co., Inc., 1978 - copies are available through Amazon.

You can write out the score for each type of instrument, such as sticks, triangles, tambourine, and drums.

Here is an example for Down In the Valley (x = play the note, 0 = rest):
/ Down in the / val / ley / val-ley so / low / /
sticks: / x x x / x 0 x / x 0 x / x 0 x / x x x / x 0 x /
triangles: / x x x / 0 x x / 0 x x / 0 x x / 0 x x / 0 x x /
tambourines: / 0 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 /shake-shake-shake/shake-shake-shake/
drums: / 0 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 /

However, for first graders a steady rhythm will work best for most pieces.
Example for Down In the Valley:
sticks: / x 0 x / x 0 x / x 0 x / x 0 x / (etc.)
triangles: / 0 x x / 0 x x / 0 x x / 0 x x / (etc.)
tambourines: / x 0 0 / shake-shake-shake / x 0 0 / shake-shake-shake / (etc.)
drums: / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / x 0 0 / (etc.)

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