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SMARTBoard Music Lesson: The Orchestra

Explore the Orchestra with this SMARTBoard Music lesson.

Designed to introduce children in elementary school  to the instruments and the families or the orchestra, this SMARTBoard Music lesson on the Orchestra  has an enormous amount of information on each page. By design, this file provides the teacher with enough varied material to teach multi-grade levels.

Options for Discovery:

The links throughout this SMARTBoard Music Lesson give the teacher control of the lesson flow, but also, options for further discovery if the interest presents itself. For example: When learning about the job of the conductor, students can learn about the conductor’s job, watch linked video clips of famous conductors to compare conducting styles and body language, watch a Bug’s Bunny video clip to see how Bugs “controls” the pace of the music, or hear different musical clips and learn to conduct in duple or triple meter.

Each page includes at least the following information:

  • Interesting facts about each instrument
  • A sound sample of just that instrument
  • A link to at least one video of that instrument being played. When possible, the videos involve children playing in an amazing way. (Linked videos are via viewpure.com)

2017 Version

The HOME page and LINKS

The HOME page contains specific links to make navigation through the pages easier. Pages within each instrumental family group are also linked.

SMARTBoard Music Lesson: The Orchestra –  A great resource!

The purpose of this file is to serve as a resource to be used over many weeks. When introducing each instrument, you may show part of the linked performance video and/or discuss the sound and physical characteristics of instruments within each family. Interesting facts are included on each page.

Stand Up Symphony Orchestra Activity

This activity, part of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra Education resources, is the learning project I used with my second graders during the year. I found it on-line and it has been the perfect project to bring the Orchestra to life!

Here’s How The Stand Up Orchestra Project Worked:

  • During music class, I introduced an instrument and watched part of the video. Often, I had the actual instrument on hand for the students to see and hold.
  • When possible,  band students came and demonstrated the instrument for our children.
  • Then, I gave out the number of instruments that would be in the orchestra (3 trumpets, 4 french horns, etc.)
  • We worked only on one instrument at the time. This kept everyone together.
  • The students spent a few minutes coloring the pieces and cutting them out.  I played an orchestra piece or one of the longer videos as they colored.
  • The students stored everything in their orchestra shoe box week to week.
  • Each student was given an orchestra seating chart and they crossed off instruments as they completed them.

Here are some pictures of our students working to create their very own orchestra:



This ended up being the best project ever! The children not only learned all about the instruments, but where the instruments are placed in the orchestra and why. They learned how many of each instrument is needed in the orchestra, and what is involved in getting all the instruments to play together. They loved the conductor section!

Lesson learned: 

It always takes longer than you think to do crafty things with kids … a LOT LONGER!! It was worth it! 🙂

Now in 3rd grade, these students KNOW so much more about the orchestra than any class I’ve ever had. I am blown away by how much they recall and how they make the connections to the sounds and orchestration of the music we listen to in music class this year. Incredible! 

 Cherie Web signature 11


Orchestra Exploration And STAND UP Pieces 17
Orchestra Exploration And STAND UP Pieces 17
Version: 17
47.9 MiB
Orchestra Stand up Pieces to copy
Orchestra Stand up Pieces to copy
Version: PDF
1.0 MiB
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Cherie Herring

Music/Technology Integration at Hammond School
I teach elementary music, am passionate about integrating technology into my teaching, am obsessed with my SMARTBoard and iPad, and enjoy creating lessons and sharing ideas. I love technology almost as much as I love cheesecake, and with more energy and ideas than I know what to do with, I can't wait for the sun to come up each morning! I'm wife to Prince Charming and mom to three incredible girls who keep me balanced. . . sort of!

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{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Nell December 23, 2012, 5:35 PM

    Howdy Ms. Cherie,

    I have used your link above to download, but the notebook files aren’t showing up? Did I do something wrong? Thanks for whatever info you can provide! 🙂

    • Cherie Herring December 23, 2012, 5:41 PM

      Hi! i just checked the link and it downloaded fine for me. The link is at the bottom of the post. I have sent you an invite to a shared folder and that might help. Please let me know if it works for you. I’m happy to help you.- cherie

      • Cherie Herring December 23, 2012, 5:48 PM

        When you touch the link, it should start to download immediately. Check your document folder to see if it downloaded there. On my computer I have a folder called “Downloads” and every new download goes there first.

  • Malin January 22, 2013, 3:41 PM

    Thank you so much for this. I’m an elementary music teacher in Sweden and this is exactly what I was looking for. Now I just have to translate it 🙂 Sharing is caring!

    • Cherie Herring January 22, 2013, 7:09 PM

      Malin, Thank you for the kind words and I’m so happy that you are able to use this lesson. Wow! Sweden! I would love to hear back from you after you use this lesson with your students… It might be really fun to have my students Skype or contact your students as we learn about the orchestra at the same time. All the best to you! – Cherie

  • Cherie June 30, 2015, 3:31 PM

    Hi Cherie,
    I do not see a live link on your blog anymore. Would you mind sending me the link to your orchestra SmartBoard file… it sounds amazing!!
    Cherie LaDuke
    AFES Elementary School

    • Cherie Herring July 1, 2015, 11:33 AM

      Cherie,(What a beautiful name!) the link to download the file is at the bottom of this post. Just touch the green arrow to begin the download. See it?

      • Anonymous July 1, 2015, 11:47 AM

        Got it! Thanks!

  • Amy Howden February 8, 2016, 4:47 AM

    Hi there

    Great resource! I don’t have a smart board though and was wondering if you could please upload the standup pieces in a word or other type of file?

    Many thanks

  • Susan April 18, 2016, 4:09 PM

    THANK YOU!! Can’t wait to use this with my Gr 2!

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