The fourth-grade students at Metz Elementary School in Austin, Texas performed a creative version of bucketdrumming.net’ s La Bamba for their 2019 Cinco De Mayo performance, throwing in a little tambourine and air guitar to spice things up.
Music teacher Kayla Juarez, who teaches at Metz Elementary and Menchaca Elementary in Austin, said she loved the practicality of bucket drums: students didn’t have to share and the buckets were easy to replace if damaged or broken.
“I thought [bucket drumming] would be really cool and affordable,” she said. “My students are having a lot of fun with it.”
The biggest challenge was getting 20 fourth-graders to hit a bucket at the same time, Ms. Juarez said. To prepare for the performance, she split the students into groups so she could give more personalized attention to students requiring extra support, she said.
“The first time they tried to practice you can imagine how that went with different skill levels and abilities,” she said. “But the lightbulb finally clicked.”
Ms. Juarez said she knew she wanted to be a music teacher ever since she joined her school band in sixth grade. She said that, as a student, music and band were a place for creative expression and having fun as well as an outlet if she was having a bad day.
“I use that mentality I had as a student to do the same thing for my students now,” she said. “At the end of the day it’s really important to me they enjoy what they’re doing and it’s not a chore to come to music.”
TEACHER SPOTLIGHT FAST FACTS
Teacher: Kayla Juarez
Students: Fourth grade students at Metz Elementary school in Austin, Texas
Students loved: The ability to play along to Top 40 songs and modern pop music
Teacher loved: That the bucket drums were affordable, sturdy, and easily replaceable if broken
LEARN TO PLAY ‘LA BAMBA’!
Led by music teacher Derek Currier, the 5th grade class at Discovery Academy of Science in Dunedin, Florida played not one, not two, but three bucket drum pieces for their school Music Fest on May 7.
The group had been practicing their bucket drumming skills since January and performed Can’t Stop the Feeling, Come Together and Rolling in the Deep for their classmates and families.
“[A highlight was] the excitement from the students and the parents at the end of the show,” Mr. Currier said. “And they had fun. That’s what it’s all about.”
Mr. Currier has been teaching music since he was 19-years-old and started the music program at Discovery Academy three years ago. He said bucket drums were the perfect way to teach hands-on lessons about percussion and rhythm.
“I was starting a program so I needed something cheap and fun. And [with bucket drumming] all I needed was buckets and sticks,” he said. “My goal in music classes is getting instruments in the kids’ hands. We aren’t going to just talk [about theory], we are going to play; we are going to do something.”
The bucket drums were not only inexpensive (Mr. Currier purchased them for $1 each at a local bait and tackle shop), but worked well as performance instruments because of their accessibility, versatility and portability, Mr. Currier said.
In addition to teaching bucket drumming, Mr. Currier also teaches saxophone, flute, clarinet, drum set and other instruments. He said one of his biggest passions as a music teacher is giving students hands-on experience with instruments. After learning on bucket drums, some students were even motivated to invest in drum sets to continue practicing, Mr. Currier said.
“I’m really about getting instruments into these hands to … give these kids a chance to make some noise and play,” he said. “It’s really motivating to see them do it.”
TEACHER SPOTLIGHT FAST FACTS
Teacher: Derek Currier
Students: Fifth-grade students at Discovery Academy of Science in Dunedin, FL
Teacher loved: The music notation included with the video tutorials and Sammy’s attitude. “You can tell he enjoys what he’s doing and as a music educator you know that’s really important,” Mr. Currier said.
Student’s loved: How visual the lessons are, with multiple angles of the drum, as well as the bucketdrumming.net jingle.
Teacher Tip: Mr. Currier said he used carwash towels over the buckets to dampen noise levels with a large group.
Hi Drum Tribe!
As the 2018-19 school year wraps up, bucketdrumming.net is giving away ONE FREE YEAR of membership to a teacher or individual interested in bucket drumming for themselves or their classroom.*
Bucket drums are ideally suited for classrooms and youth programs because they are fun, engaging, low cost or free, and portable.
A bucketdrumming.net membership subscription includes unlimited access to:
- 150+ video tutorials and play-along songs (including Top 40 songs students love)
- Warm up exercises and beat breakdowns
- Lessons plans for beginner to advanced levels
- Challenges and quizzes
- Sheet music
- Performance ideas
To enter, like @bucketdrumming on Instagram then comment on one of our photos with the hashtag #drumanywhere. Contest ends June 25 and a special drawing will be held to announce the winner.
* This contest is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Instagram.
Kemit Price and his group, TRANSFORM, at Bridgeway Community Church in Columbia, Maryland worked hard to learn both the intermediate and advanced parts to The Little Drummer Boy and performed the piece at their Christmas celebration on December 23. Check out the video at the bottom of the post! He was assisted by adult leaders Leette Greene, Richard Norvell, Jessie Norvell and Jenni Kee.
“The kids were really excited about that, just being able to complete the piece and combine those two parts together,” Mr. Kemit said. “It was pretty complicated but they eventually got it.”
Mr. Kemit said the bucket drums were a perfect fit for his group because they were inexpensive, allowed the students to practice anywhere and also matched the unique style of Bridgeway Church with its graffiti walls, unconventional approach to outreach and focus on inclusivity.
“Our motto is to glorify God with unexpected instruments,” Mr. Kemit said. “[Our church] is very accepting of different types of people and it’s very unorthodox so the bucket drumming fit right into that.”
Mr. Kemit has played drums and keyboard for nearly 30 years and also has a background as a choir director. He said bucketdrumming.net videos helped teach his students music and percussion skills as well as leadership skills.
“[Students learned to] lead, calling out the different cues,” he said. “I found it very rewarding helping kids become leaders and teaching them skills they can use both in the church and outside as well.”
TEACHER SPOTLIGHT FAST FACTS
Teacher: Kemit Price
Students: TRANSFORM group at Bridgeway Community Church, Columbia MD
Teacher loved: Tips on cues and methods for calling students back to attention
Student’s loved: Copycat (exercise) and Sammy’s sense of humor
TRANSFORM PERFORMANCE OF LITTLE DRUMMER BOY
Thanks for having me present a bucket drumming session KMEA!
I’m feeling so grateful for the experience and happy I finally got to meet many of you!
Your enthusiasm and warm welcome helped me feel right at home.
I hope to see you all again!
Other schools/organizations –
If you’re interested in having me present for your group please send me a message.
As we wrap up 2018, I wanted to THANK YOU for a wonderful year.
I have enjoyed it thoroughly and I hope you have too.
If it wasn’t a great year, may 2019 be your best year yet!
P.S. Here are some of my top bucket drumming videos watched from 2018.
This lesson describes the 10 names for our bucket drumming equipment and parts.
Do you know all of them?
Here’s the quiz printout.
For this full lesson and more lessons and quizzes like this one,
join the Bucket Drumming Online School
This lesson is meant for the beginning of our bucket drumming journey.
If we don’t know the names of the equipment we use or the parts of the bucket we play, it will make learning and teaching more difficult.
Imagine if I said, “play that thing on that thing.”
It will be hard to understand what I’m talking about unless you see me pointing.
Learning these words is the foundation for communication and thinking for bucket drumming here on.
Happy Drumming & Learning to you!
Start with this song when teaching bucket drumming.
The sheet music and song form is in the Bucket Drumming Online School.
(PLUS, 150 step by step video lessons for learning to bucket drum.)-
This song by Queen is fun, easy and you can build your coordination starting with one rhythm.
The rhythm is the same through the whole song but the sticking changes.
First, we play with the RIGHT HAND.
Next, we play the same thing with the LEFT HAND.
Finally, we use BOTH HANDS for the same rhythm as above.
Hope you enjoy! Let me know how it goes in the comments.
Learn this FUN song -> “La Bamba” by Ritchie Valens!
Sheet Music and Song form in the Member’s Area.
Bucket Drumming Online School
This might be considered an intermediate level.
Not because of the notes but because of the speed.
At a slowed down level this could be more beginner.
Hope you enjoy! Let me know in the comments.
P.S. “Back to School” Sale for Annual Pass ends August 14th.