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Intro to Improvisation | Lesson Plan Download

Intro to Improv lesson

GRADES: 3-12 (with modifications)

Scroll to the form to download the lesson plan.

This is a simple lesson for introducing the basics of improvisation with an engaging “hands-on” activity. Students can be successful with their first improvisation experience, while also practicing rhythms and ensemble listening skills.

It could also be used as a fun musical “game” in ensemble classes who are already familiar with improvisation.

Most classes should take about 30 minutes to introduce the topic and get the activity running smoothly. This lesson plan is very flexible and can easily be modified for a wide range of ages, class times, and student interests.

There are also several lesson extensions that you could use to modify this activity for more advanced students, and it serves as a great foundational activity before starting vocal or instrumental improvisation in ensemble classes.

Complete this form to be taken to the download page.


These links and videos are great for introducing the concept of improvisation to your students. The first few are explanatory, followed by our favorite examples of musical improv, and the last few are other improv activities you could do with your classes.

Short intro to Improvisation

A nice concise definition of improvisation in jazz.

Another short look at improvisation in jazz music.

Appropriate for older students who may be interested in more in-depth topics.

He uses the audience as one big choir.

This one is longer, but band and orchestra students especially will enjoy it.

Yes, two of these are by Bobby McFerrin but he’s amazing!

A quick and easy way to get kids improvising as a vocal warm up activity.

A vocal improvisation activity that adds movement as well.

Add your vocal improvisations over these simple beats as an extension for this lesson.




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