Donna Ransdell

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Donna’s Lesson Plan Files For Music Teachers

A teacher of music in grades K-6 shares her collection of plans and resources.
by Donna Ransdell
September 1, 2008


Planning tips

Each year, Donna sits down with large 12”x18” pieces of white construction paper to plan her year, one piece for each grade level. Across the top, she writes the months of the school year. Along the side, she writes “Concept of the Month”, “Lessons for Concepts”, “Special Activities,” “Composers,” “Listening Lessons,” “Songs” and “Seasonal Songs.” Then, she grids the paper, opens that grade level’s Teacher Edition, and begins to plan for the 18 week semesters at each school she teaches.

Plans and Activities

Silver Burdett Making Music Third Grade:

Silver Burdett Making Music Fourth Grade:

Silver Burdett Making Music Fifth Grade:

Silver Burdett Making Music Sixth Grade:

6th Grade/Middle School History of 20th Century Popular Music Unit:

K-2 Rhythm Stick Routine (to the music of Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade):

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About Donna Ransdell...

Donna received her Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education “more years ago than I want to admit!” from Culver-Stockton College in Missouri. She has taught elementary general music for more than 10 years in several districts in southern Arizona and southern California, as well as private music and voice. In addition, she is certified in Multiple Subjects K-8 and is an experienced self-contained classroom teacher in several grade levels (especially 2nd and 5th). One of her daughters, a recent college graduate, is an elementary general music teacher; her other daughter should complete her Early Childhood Education Lead Teacher certification by the end of 2008.

Donna currently teaches in two schools in San Diego County, each school served one semester full-time. At one school, she has approximately 30 classes and an after-school choir made up of 4th, 5th and 6th graders. The other school has about 28 classes, an after-school choir of upper elementary students, and an after-school auditioned group that performs one musical per semester. She declares that she has “the best two schools in my district,” as each has something to brag about – outstanding students, staff, or PTA group.

Outside of the classroom, Donna’s hobbies include reading, sewing and the computer, as she is the webmaster of a website for fans of an old TV show.

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