Learning about saxophones in music class

Here are a few Lesson Plan Ideas that can help your students learn about the saxophone in their music class. It will make your music lesson plans
easier to create.

A popular instrument these days is the Saxophone. It has uses from Jazz to Classical and Rock music. Saxophones are often featured in “big band” music.”Big Band” music often features the saxophone. Two alto saxophones, two tenors and one baritone typically make up the saxophone section Any of the saxophonists may double on other woodwind instruments.

Learning the names of the saxophone family is easy with these ideas. Students can be divided into groups of four Distribute any remainders into other groups to make a few groups of five. Ask students to arrange themselves by height within each group, and make labels or cards for the saxophone which corresponds to their size – soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophone (groups of five can continue onto bass saxophone). Therefore the tallest student will be the baritone or bass saxophone, the next largest the tenor, etc

Repeat the exercise with other attributes – birthday, shoe size, length of hair, etc.

To combine this with a music theory activity you could create some flashcards with single pitches on them, and ask them to match them to appropriate saxophones.

For an extra challenge and a quieter classroom, have the students complete some of these tasks without speaking.

Suggested Listening:Duke Ellington, Three Suites album. Sony / BMG Custom Marketing Group 723866. This Contains a big-band jazz arrangement of Tchaikovsky’s beloved Nutcracker Suite.