Library Locations Search site

Winter Weather - Music in a Box

  • Dec 16, 2010
  • Dianna Babcock & Cheryl Henningsgaard

A favorite MacPhail Winter Weather lesson includes musical “Snow Songs” and “Winter Dressing Songs” integrated with the story, The Jacket I Wear in the Snow, written by Shirley Neitzel and illustrated by Nancy Winslow Parker. Pictures instead of words are used to describe the winter-weather clothing needed for a child to go outside for snowy, cold-weather play. These pictures add to the enjoyment of the young readers who can label the word pictures to participate in reading the story.

Your story time audience will enjoy socio dramatic play along with creative movement opportunities that are enhanced through music. Winter play music could include both vocal and instrumental music.

Music in a Box components include:

Literacy Goals:

  • Phonological Awareness - repetition of text, pictures, rhythm and rhyme
  • Print Motivation - pictures labeling specific words used in the story
  • Vocabulary - adjectives used to describe winter-weather wear
  • Narrative - lots of sequencing

Activities/extension with Music:

  • Socio dramatic play listening to music.
  • Creative Movement - Dancing to the Nutcracker Suite (composer-Tchaikovsky), adding colorful scarves or rhythm instruments such as bells, tambourines, or triangles.
  • Using the song “Head, shoulders, knees and toes” to describe outdoor winter wear and where that winter clothing would be worn (on the arms, head, feet, etc.) that would be needed for the child in this story.
  • Make a musical winter snowstorm - put cotton balls on top of a bouncing parachute or large piece of material and “shake the snow.” Children love to make the “snowballs” bounce! Add instrumental music with a quick, steady beat (Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson) while you create this musical snowstorm.


  • Parachute, one bag of sterile cotton balls, jingle bells, colorful scarves, CD player, CD of song suggestions, and book!! Have fun creating your musical storytelling time!

Parent Education Tips:

  • Create a visual “dressing board” for young children to assist them with sequencing their winter weather dress.
  • Play act winter dressing “the night before” several times to assist young children with sequencing.

©MacPhail Center for Music, 2010


Post a Comment

Required Field