Farm-linked activities for KS1 Music

KS1 Music activities that can be carried out before, during or after a school visit.

Curriculum area: Use voices expressively

  • During farm visit go on a sound walk. Note down or record all the different sounds heard. Can they replicate these noises, rhythms and timbres?
  • Children sit in a circle with contrasting percussion instruments in center. Ask children to select an instrument to make the sound of their favourite farm animal. Children add their voices to the instruments.

Curriculum area: Play tuned or un-tuned instruments


  • Create a music corner in the classroom. Using up to five contrasting percussion insturments children to choose a picture and find an instrument to make an appropriate matching sound eg wooden agogo for horses, song whistle for cockerel, guiro for tractor.
  • Read a farm story book. Stop at interesting moments and ask children to play their percussion  instrument appropriately to illustrate that part of the story.
  • Use percussion instruments to accompany a familiar farm song such as 'Old Macdonald'; each
    child or group making the sound for a certain animal.
  • Make up a piece of music to send animals to sleep and another to wake them up.

Resources needed:

  • Recording device
  • Percussion instruments
  • Farm pictures
  • Farm story book

Curriculum area: Listen to and understand a range of high quality live and recorded music


Having listened to a piece of music encourage the children to:

  • Describe (fast, slow, loud, soft, scary, high, low, soothing, going up/down, jumping etc).
  • Compare two pieces ('one was fast, the other slow').
  • Give opinions ('I like the loud bangs/I don't like that slow piece').
  • Compare different parts of the same piece (eg Peter and the Wolf - the duck before and after being eaten).
  • Decide which animals/birds they think are being played.
  • Move to the piece the way the animal or birds might be moving.
  • Develop a dance based on one piece and then two contrasting pieces.

Resources needed:

Pre-recorded music. The following pieces provide music which represents animals and birds. (NB It is only necessary to use 30-second sections from each piece.

  • Mussorgsky Pictures at an exhibition: iv Bydlo, v Ballet of the chickens in their shells.
  • Prokofiev Peter and the wolf.
  • Saint-SaĆ«ns Carnival of the animals
  • Stravinsky Suite from The Firebird: Firebirds dance
  • Schumann Scenes of childhood: Knight of the hobby horse
  • Ibert The little white donkey
  • Vaughan Williams The lark ascending.