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GAMEPLAN Grade 1 Curriculum



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There are lots of movement activities (locomotor and non-locomotor) in the lessons that your first graders will enjoy! - Kathy

GAMEPLAN Curriculum Grade One
An Active Music Curriculum for Children
By Jeff Kriske and Randy DeLelles
Spiral-bound book
136 pages

Each grade level in the GAMEPLAN series includes 35 weeks of lesson plans for the elementary music specialist. This curriculum is organized chronologically through the school year from September to May with four lessons per month each with approximately 60 minutes of activities. Grade One has over 200 activities. GAMEPLAN has organized musical objectives in a logical progression that is educationally sound and developmentally appropriate. GAMEPLAN presents the lessons in a concise format that is practical, easy-to-follow and user-friendly.

Each grade level includes:
- Lessons organized into a logical sequence
- A yearly plan categorizing objectives in 5 conceptual areas
- Experiences in imitation, exploration, improvisation and visualization
- Holiday and seasonal activities incorporated into the teaching sequence
- Activities that spark creativity and higher-level thinking skills
- A repertoire rich in folk literature, nursery rhymes and traditional singing games
- Four formal written assessments
- A seating chart template, including space for assessment
- Illustration of all of the charts and visuals used in each lesson

Rhythm Objectives:
Demonstrate pulse (individual/group), identify pulse as Ta or I, differentiate between sound/silence, identify sound/silence as Ta/Rest, experience fast/slow, identify fast/slow; identify TiTi/Ta; and experience meter (2/4, 4/4 6/8).

Melody Objectives:
Differentiate between high/low, experience up/down, develop a repertoire of songs (folk/seasonal/multicultural/patriotic), experience SM/SML melodies, identify SM/SML scale tones and hand signals and demonstrate contour.

Harmony Objectives:
Develop a proper mallet technique, demonstrate simple bordun (chord) and experience ostinato.

Form Objectives:
Experience same/different, identify phrase, identify introduction, identify repeat sign and identify same/different as AB (ABA).

Timbre Objectives:
Identify unpitched percussion, differentiate between vocal qualities (speak/sing/whisper/shout), demonstrate dynamics (loud/quiet), classify unpitched percussion (wood/metal/skin), identify four levels of body percussion (snap/clap/pat/stamp) and classify pitched percussion (wood/metal).

Children's literature used in GAMEPLAN Grade 1:
Drummer Hoff (item 835719)
It's Not Easy Being a Bunny (item 836125)
The Very Busy Spider (item 835394)

The children's books are available at a savings in a set, item 840246. The Charts & Visuals that correlate with Grade 1 are item 550061. GAMEBOARD, item 550062, has classroom visuals that are a companion piece to the GAMEPLAN curriculum.

Songs and Poems:

A - H: Acka Backa, A Kite, All About Success, All Around the Buttercup, All Around the Circle, Allison's Camel, America, Baker's Hat, Bell Horses, Big Black Cats, Bounce High Bounce Low, Bunnies on the Move, Candy Store, Celebrate the Presidents, Chase the Squirrel, Christmas Now is Over, Clap Clap Clap Your Hands, Criss-cross Applesauce, Do As I'm Doing, Drip Drop, Drummer Hoff, Eency Weency Spider, Engine Engine, Fang and Twang, Five Little Monkeys, The Gallant Ship, Go All Around the Village, Gobble Gobble Gobble, Hanukah is Here, Hello Everybody, Hickory Dickory Dock, Higglety Pigglety Pop, Hippity Hop, Hop Old Squirrel, Hunting for Instruments!

I - R: I Can Play the Wood Block, I Hope!, I Lost My Glove, I Think Music's Neat, It's Not Easy Being a Bunny, Jack and Jill, Jack-in-the-Box, Jim Along Josie, Jump Jim Joe, The Kangaroo, La Pinata, Legs and All, Little Jack Pumpkin Face, Little Red Caboose, Look at Me, Lucky Me!, Lucy Locket, March is Here Now, Melodrama, Mexican Counting Song, Miss Mary Mack, Monkey See and Monkey Do, The Muffin Man, Now's the Time, Oh What Fun!, The Old Gray Cats Are Sleeping, Oliver Twist, One Two Three, Otto Goes to the Beach, Pease Porridge Hot, Punchinella, Rain on the Green Grass

S - Z: Saw Saw Saw Away, She'll Be Comin' 'Round the Mountain, Sing Me Your Name, Snowflakes, Somebody's Knocking at Your Door, The Squirrel, Stirring My Brew, Sugar Sugar, Teddy Bear, There's Music in a Hammer, Time for Toys, Tres Pajaritos, Two Little Apples, Valentine, The Very Busy Spider, Walk and Stop, Weekend Fun, Welcome Back to School, What Shall We Do When We All Go Out?, What Will You Be?, Willum, Yankee Doodle, Yuki Song


All of the musical examples used in this curriculum are listed on page X (10) of the Preface. Individual tracks can be purchased as available on iTunes.

The following recordings, listed on page X, are available from West Music:

Rhythmically Moving Recordings: Vol 1, 3, 5, 6 and 8

Vol. 1 #850843

Vol. 3 #850845

Vol. 5 #850847

Vol. 6 #850848

Vol. 8 #850850

The complete 9-volume set #850842 is available at a savings.


Flat shiping rate applies.


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GAMEPLAN Grade 1 Curriculum
Already Asked: 10 Questions, 48 Answers
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West Music Store asked: Why did you choose this?
Deborah F: Great for general music Aug 28, 2014
Stephanie H: the teachers in my district are all using game plan in their younger grades and I wanted to have my own copy Sep 3, 2013
Peggy P: Just received the fourth grade curriculum - I think with adding some music history this will be a great curriculum Jul 1, 2013
Eric R: Excellent for all kids. I love how simple and enjoyable it breaks everything down. Both for teachers and students. May 21, 2013
Phil M: I added this volume to my resources for more planning ideas. Apr 29, 2013
Janet W: Great, easy to use curriculum with a nice mix of movement, instrument and song activities. Apr 23, 2013
Anne G F: I read good reviews of this product and needed a curriculum resource for teaching first graders. Jan 9, 2013
Katherine D: I chose this because I was so happy with the Kindergarten book. Nov 29, 2012
Justin M: This is full of great plans that are easy to teach and enjoyable. If you need something that will have quick and easy songs and rhymes this is a great resource. There are also movement activities and visuals in the back Nov 26, 2012
Maria E: This is such an awesome curriculum! Oct 21, 2012
Joan M: I've heard great things Gameplan and I need help coming up with lesson plans--so hoping for the best! Sep 5, 2012
Yvonne B: I found numerous recommendations online for this particular curriculum. Aug 29, 2012
Janis L: I have heard and seen so many wonderful things about Gameplan. I can't wait to use it in my teaching! Aug 19, 2012
Shane R: High standard Jan 28, 2012
Veronica H: Fun & my students love the activities! Sep 20, 2011
Katherine P: This will round out my curriculum. I now have the complete GAmeplan curriculum! Woo hoo! Aug 27, 2011
natalie h asked: Is it necessary to buy all the extra visual aids with the Gameplan curriculum? Nov 15, 2012
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Jeri D: I did not buy any visual aids. There are pictures in the back of the books that show you what you need if you want to make them yourself. I learned about these books through a fellow teacher whose principal bought it ALL for her. If you have the money, they are very nice

I purchased K, 1, and 2 Teacher Guides out of my own pocket. My friend showed me the extras and I know that I can make my own if I need them.

By the way, my students really like the activities. This is supplemental material for me; I will take anything that works from any teacher and I share too. Hope this helps.
Nov 15, 2012
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Katherine P: Hi there!

I have all of the Gameplan books, and I do not have any of the visuals. I have a Smartboard in my classroom, and I have made my own. However, I will say that I am missing those visuals that show the xylophone. However, even with that, I'm doing just fine with all of my classes.

I love the program! The kids are enjoying the activities as well. Hope that helps!
Nov 18, 2012
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Laura C: I did not purchase the visuals. I have had no problem keeping up with making them myself and laminating them, but as I am saving so much time not having to create lesson plans, it has not been too much for me. Hope that helps,
Nov 18, 2012
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Kristen P: I have managed to make most myself or use some kind of substitute. I'm sure my life would be much easier with the visuals, but they're pricey and it is definitely possible to make do without. Dec 19, 2012
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St S: I didn't by the extra visual aids, as I created smartboard slides on my own. I will admit it is a bit of extra work, but I can adapt as I wish and have them all saved for the future. Nov 16, 2012
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Laiken S: I did not buy the visual aids, however I already have rhythm cards and a smartboard in my room. I create me own visual aids for lessons when needed. Nov 19, 2012
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Kelly W: No. I just bought the grade level books. It shows pictures of the visuals in it and I just make my own. It takes time but it saves A LOT of money. Nov 15, 2012
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Danielle S: No. In fact, our school is very technology focused so I have created various powerpoints to serve as the visual aids. The kids love it! :) Nov 16, 2012
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Adam P: No. Many of them can be created with a little creativity and skill. Also, there are pages in the back that provide most of the aids. Nov 15, 2012
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Michael C: Not at all. It's a convenience, but one is quite able to make do without and design each as you see fit. Nov 18, 2012
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Gwenn W: No. They provide pictures of each visual and you can make your own version Nov 15, 2012
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A shopper asked: I am a homeschool mom. I used to teach in the regular classroom. I can read music. I played the violin and am teaching myself to play piano. I am not a music specialist. I only took one music class in college (the same class every education major takes). Will I be able to teach this curriculum to my 6 year old daughter? Or should I pick something else? I want a curriculum that does a good job, but something that I can understand. Oct 14, 2012
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Katherine P: Hi there! Honestly, I would not recommend this curriculum for a home-school situation. It uses cooperative games and instruments that music classrooms would have. Also, it is written specifically for music specialists who have been trained in teaching music to children.

You might look into the Musicplay Curriculum. It has some cross-curricular activities available, and not many instruments are needed, although, having those would greatly enhance the program. Another possibility is the curriculum known as "First Steps" by John Fiereabend. Another thought is to put your daughter into private lessons or in a church choir situation. That way she will get all the benefits of music from trained music teachers. Good luck!
Oct 15, 2012
Reply to Katherine Good answer? Yes (4) No (1)
Billings P: Hello,
I use GamePlan with my elementary music classes. It is really a curriculum meant for classroom experiences (with many children), but there are many things that you can pull from it to use with an individual child. It is very straightforward from a music teacher's view, and easily understandable. If there is something you're not sure about, you can choose something else from the book. It would be best if you could borrow someone's curriculum book to look through before purchasing. I'm not sure I would go to the expense of purchasing all the visuals that go with the curriculum, but the grade level cards/chart book are nice. You could easily create your own visuals from the examples in the book for the activities you choose.
Oct 15, 2012
Reply to Billings Good answer? Yes (1) No (0)
Laura C: Yes! You will definitely be able to use gameplan. The songs are easily learned by children, and parents have reported back to me that they hear their children singing the songs at home. The only problem you might have is that there is usually a game at the end of each week's lesson. There is plenty of material if you don't use the game, and perhaps you can modify the games for you and couple of neighborhood kids. The teaching process is detailed and clearly laid out, although you might try to attend even one Orff chapter workshop, as it might help you see the process in action. (Orff teachers take great pride in their teaching process.) Good luck. I would recommend this curriculum over any other I have ever used. Oct 16, 2012
Reply to Laura Good answer? Yes (0) No (0)
Colleen H: Gameplan is an excellent curriculum and your daughter would be well prepared, but I think it's very much directed to music teachers. Many of the activities have instruments and props which would only be found in a music room.
I'd like to suggest that you look at Musicplay by Denise Gagne. It is very easy to follow, includes CDs for singing and listening (unlike Gameplan which has no CDs). it is sequential by month and is full of activities which you could follow. It's probably less expensive. I actively use both curriculums in my classroom and based upon my experiences, I'd say you should get Musicplay. It is targeted by grade level and has curriculum to sixth grade.
Oct 15, 2012
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Sandy H: Dear Shopper,

This curriculum is great however i would not recommend it for you to teach in a homeschool setting. It geared toward teachers who are certified in Orff-schulwerk method of music education and all the activities are geared toward classrooms with multiple children. I have loved teaching with this curriculm but would strongly suggest that you find another musical outlet for your young child. She is not too young to start piano lessons OR find a Kindermuisik class near you. THis would be the best bet. Good luck!

Sandy Holland
Artistic Director
Charlotte Children's Choir
Oct 15, 2012
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Mt S: I'm not sure you would want to get this to just teach one child at home. This curriculum uses a lots of different instruments and listening examples that can be bought from I-Tunes, however it can get expensive. Many of the ideas are for multiple students doing things at different times. I don't know of a curriculum that might fit your needs at this time. Maybe get your child involved in piano or violin lessons to help them learn about music. Definitely try to take her to some classical concerts in your area. Good luck! Oct 15, 2012
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PATRICK H: You might try teaching your child piano as you learn. This curriculum is designed for groups of students and really works best with the teacher book and the visuals. You might also consider having your child take piano lessons from a professional piano teacher and join a choir. If you are located in a larger city you might be able to find a childrens' chorus for your child to join. Many childrens' choruses offer very fine musical educations. Oct 16, 2012
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Gwenn W: It does have lots of xylophone options, but those could be moved over to piano pretty easily. Lots of singing games intended for large groups

Music Play may be a better choice. There are more activities that could be used in a small group or one on one.
Oct 15, 2012
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Shane R: It's a very comprehensive curriculum. the only drawback I found - and this might be important for a busy mother homeschooling - is that a CD to accompany the text would be very useful. Oct 17, 2012
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Lori M asked: I have grades 1-8 for music 1 time/week (35-45 minute classes) in my small Christian school. I'm wondering how I would adapt this 60 min/week curriculum for my needs. Funds are limited. Any suggestions? Are any of you in a similar situation who have used this curriculum in a nontradtional way? Jan 15, 2013
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Katherine P: Lori,

I have grades 1-5 for music, and I have this curriculum for all of those grades. I have 40-minute classes and see them in a rotation of once every four days -- so close to once each week. Here's how I adapt: 1. Sometimes, I just have the lesson last more than one period depending on what is being taught. 2. Sometimes, I'll choose what I consider to be the "main parts' of the lesson, and skip some things like the rhythmic training sessions -- or put those into a different part of the lesson. 3. Sometimes, I'll use a song or a game, but shorten the time that we concentrate on that game or song. 4. Sometimes, I'll use the song, and the instrument playing, but not add the game, or change the game to include more students, so you are able to get through the game in a shorter period of time.

I think it truly depends on what you think is important for your students to know at the end of the day. I love this curriculum! OH! And, just to let you know, last year, I didn't really complete the curriculum with my 4th graders, so, this year, as 5th graders, they're actually doing lots of review! They don't even really remember that they've done it, and on songs where they do, I'm just pulling out different aspects of those songs -- or adding more time in playing the orchestration.

Good luck!
Jan 15, 2013
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Lori M: Thanks for your help! Jan 15, 2013
Jessie A: Hi- We use the some of the Gameplan exercise in conjunction with our own curriculum and original music. The kids have loved all the ideas we have used, even ones I though they might get bored of. (Like the chicken dance, they love that thing!!) We are limited in funds, as well, and have not purchased any of the visual tools that go along with it. We don't feel you need them, especially if you are doing a 30-40 minute class once a week. There are PLENTY of ideas in this book and we haven't even used all of them. I will say that they don't all work for what we want to accomplish in our music classes but It is definitely worth the money. Jan 15, 2013
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Lori M: Thanks for your reply, Jessie. We do have Smartboards, so I might consider using some of those components. Our principal is wanting to remain bookless for music (for students). I have a music degree (plus elementary ed), but teach several subjects all day in addition to music classes. I was thinking about buying all components for selected grades (e.g., grades 1, 3, and 5) and using them for 2 grades each. Do you think that would be possible? We have no formal curriculum, so I am looking for something that will satisfy national standards. Jan 15, 2013
Jessie A: Yes- it is definitely possible. We are doing that now with a Primary class (Kindergarten and 1st together) and the book works well. It also follows the national standards and breaks it down per semester so you can use the program all year. Jan 15, 2013
Laura C: Since each week's lesson is a set of three to five activities/songs, you could pick and choose only those activities that you want to highlight. I have a friend teaching in a similar situation, once/week, and she purchased K, 2, and 4, and modifies the lessons for older or younger kids as needed. I add some favorite songs to my lessons and leave out some of theirs, but still use gameplan to keep me on track as far as what to teach, when to teach it, etc. Jan 15, 2013
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Lori M: Thanks, Laura! Your input is quite helpful. Now, to complicate things, I spend most of the first semester of each year teaching first a 1st-8th grade fall musical, followed almost immediately by a 1st-8th grade Christmas musical. I'm wondering if the curriculum would work (since it seems to be tied to the calendar) if most of it is taught the second semester. I have a degree in vocal music K-12, but only spend 1-2 periods of the day teaching music. I am a 6th grade homeroom teacher and teacher a lot of other subjects, as well. I hate to be such a pest, but I am trying to choose a curriculum core that will help me satisfy core standards, etc., without demanding a lot of planning time--which I obviously don't have. I have to have a decision made soon. Yikes! Jan 15, 2013
Laura C: Well....that is a lot. I have a similar situation with my 4th and 5th graders. We have guitars for one month in September, then I teach "regular" curriculum in October, and then of course we are working on Christmas programs. I found that I did not use my 4th grade curriculum at all because of this, and I didn't even buy the 5th grade gameplan. I guess it depends on whether or not you teach recorders or anything else specifically to certain grades. I would still recommend gameplan, but Denise Gagne has a curriculum out called MusicPlay that is similarly priced, but her lessons don't use as many songs, instead offering more things to do with those songs (orff, kodaly, general classroom teacher choices, etc). These books don't offer a teaching process. If you are teaching recorder, I would suggest Recorder Routes as a complete curriculum for the grade that you teach recorders to. This being said, gameplan requires the least amount of planning for me. I just go through each week and pick what activities I'm going to do. They have the best process for teaching each song/element that I have seen in my 30 years of teaching, so you will need less planning because the authors have already thought through the process. Recorder Routes also has great teaching processes. As I look through K, 1, 2, 3 gameplan I think you could start right in January. You might need to review a few concepts from earlier in the year, but after using a few years in a row, you wouldn't even need to do that. 406-202-1192 if you want to talk in person. Jan 16, 2013
Katherine D: I teach first grade every other week for 45 minutes. This book is a great resource. All the activities are short so you can pick and choose which ones you think are most useful in your situation. It's very flexible. As a colleague said, it's a great starting point to make sure your plans are age and ability appropriate. You can use it to generate ideas of your own, too. Jan 15, 2013
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Lori M: Thank you, Katherine. Jan 15, 2013
Veronica H: I pick and choose certain ideas within the curriculum to fit my 40 minute classes. It's great when you want Hirt fun songs that you can scaffold other instruments and ideas on top of. I have little funding as well and use these songs and arrangements all the time. Jan 16, 2013
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Lori M: Thank you, Veronica. I just need something meaty enough standards-wise, affordable, fun and easy to use. Not asking much, right? :-B Jan 16, 2013
Jeanette B: I found that even seeing children for 60 min. per week, I didn't use everything in the plans. I chose the elements I wished to use by what worked best for my goals.. Gameplan encourages imagination in children. Usually those were the ideas I used in my plans. Jan 15, 2013
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Lori M: Thanks, Jeanette! Jan 15, 2013
Georgene D asked: What are the recordings like? Dec 26, 2013
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Kimberly M: Gameplan includes a list in the front of each book of the recordings used. you can buy them individually as you need or want to use them... or there is an option to buy all of grade 1 in a set through i tunes. I initially bought all the music, however if money is tight I would recommend purchasing as you use them. I think the music recordings are high quality, lots of classical music. My kids really like the music and the curriculum! Dec 31, 2013
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Nathan G: It doesn't come with a CD but references famous classical tunes such as a piece from The Nutcracker. It does have dances to music but the music comes from a different merchandise like the Rhythmically Moving series. Dec 31, 2013
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A shopper asked: Hi, how can I see a lesson sequence and a sample lesson? Jun 8, 2016
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Mark JStaff: Please contact us at service@westmusic.com, and we would be happy to email you a sample lesson. Jun 8, 2016
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Michelle asked: Can you tell me what the ISBN 10 or ISBN 13 for this item is? May 12, 2016
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Mark JStaff: The ISBN is 9780976765004 May 12, 2016
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A shopper asked: hi, would this work for preschool? 4-5 year olds? Jul 28, 2014
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Patricia J: I would try the GamePlan Kindergarten book - the activities are more suited to younger students. Jul 29, 2014
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Brenda P asked: copyright date?? May 12, 2012
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Amy LStaff: The copyright date for Gameplan grade 1 is 2005. May 14, 2012
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Julie J asked: I just purchased the Gameplan 2 for my second graders, and so far, love it, but since I started using it early October, and am working through in sequence, I've noticed that a lot of the October plans involve Halloween....and I won't be getting to that until mid-November. Any suggestions for adapting the use, if you don't start the first week of school? Am thinking about getting Gameplan 1, to start early November, but am wondering if I will have the same problem. Reason I am getting these materials now has to do with the new requirements of our school division. I've never been a fan of the music series recordings, have used folk music as the basis for curriculum, so I was attracted to Game Plan based on the number of traditional rhymes, songs and singing games included. Not a fan of "original" music, for the most part. Oct 22, 2014
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