In The Spotlight!: Music in Movies

Lately I have had movie music on the brain, playing the Theme from Jaws at random times, listening to movie soundtracks, and occasionally bursting out into song from my favorite motion pictures. We tend to hear these epic soundtracks to our Hollywood made stories everywhere and everyone  young and small knows what they are and where they come from. My thought is how would we teach this to our younger students? This teaching process has already been mastered by the music tech greats at the higher level, how would we simplify those activities so elementary students could enjoy learning the sounds from movies they hear so often.

Three things movie music can teach:

  • How music in a certain moment can affect ones mood or emotions
  • Story telling through sound
  • Relation between music and movement

Now what sort of activities could you bring to the classroom to teach them?

Playing Movie Music – With Joytune’s new movie music pack myself and my students can enjoy the music of John Williams all the time. It might sound too hard for younger students but when you simplify it down to just the main theme, younger students can enjoy playing movie music on classroom instruments.

Storybook Soundtracks- Movies are just live stories, take a storybook and turn it into a movie. Have your students read it, draw the pictures, do the foley art and create the background track.

iMovie Trailers- Each genre of movie has it’s own distinct sound. Have your students easily create iMovie trailers using the iMovie app on the iPads to go along with the music. Once they are done, have a movie class and bring the popcorn!

Foley Artists– The art of foley, teaching the students the true art of sound performance before all these big fancy sound machines came. It is a great lesson for sounds of found objects.

Make your own music- Cut out the sound and have the kids put the voices and music in themselves using garageband or audacity.


What sort of ways would you teach younger students how music from movies works?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s