Unit 2, Lesson #1: "Don't Worry, Be Happy"


Central Focuses:


The primary central focus is to introduce students to musical elements: melody (do pentatonic).

  • Students will be able to notate notes, C, D, E, G, and A on the staff and identify stanza and ABA form. (Bobby McFerrin: Don't Worry, Be Happy) (Pr: 4.2)
  • Students will be able to demonstrate and explain how the selection of music to perform is influenced by personal interest, knowledge, and context, their personal and others’ technical skill. (Pr4.1)
  • Students will explain how responses to music are informed by the structure, the use of the elements of music, and social and cultural context. (Re7.2)


The focuses of this unit are to guide students to explore self-awareness, self-management. 

  • Students will be able to explore how children make music and how the different styles of music affect our emotional feelings.












Do Pentatonic (Notes, C, D, E, G & A)

Ta, ti-ti, ta-a, quarter rest

Pop Music

  • Don't Worry, Be Happy


Key Questions:
  • How does this connect with what we’ve learned before?
  • What message are the performers trying to send to the audience?
  • How does the style of music affect your emotions?

Entrance Task/Check-In: (be sure to review virtual class norms)

Activity 1

Teacher-led Instruction (“I do”): 

  • Review Do Tetratonic with solfege hand sign, instructing students to echo sing.
  • Play “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” for the students a couple of times. Ask listening questions before each play back. Ask SEL questions (examples below):



  • What do you think about the children who sang the song and made music from the different parts of the world?
  • What are the children doing while they sing that captures your attention. How are they making you feel like you want to join in and sing along with them?
  • What is the message they were trying to send to the audience?
  • How do you feel after watching this video? Explain why this video makes you feel happy, excited, joyful, or hopeful. If it doesn’t make you feel that way, tell us why.
  • Have the changes in our world during the last two years affected you positively or negatively? What have you enjoyed during this time? What has been difficult for you?

Guided/Collaborative Practice (“We Do”):

Identify the abstracted melodic part for the students. Instruct students to echo sing text. Play “Disappearing Song” where teacher gradually sings less of the selected song part and students sing more until students have memorized their part.. 


Independent Practice (“You do”) or Group-work with deliverable:

Split students into two groups. Play “Switching Parts.” Teacher will conduct one group and instruct them to sing. The other group watches. Teacher switches to conduct the second group. Teacher informs students that the “switching” could happen at any time during the song so they need to keep their focus on the teacher.


Have the entire class perform the song independently from teacher support. Ask students to complete self-reflection.

Activity 2

Music - Melody:

In the previous lesson, we learned about Do-Tetratonic scale. This week, we will learn about Do-Pentatonic.


Penta means five, there are five notes: C (do), D (re), E (mi), G (so), A (la). High C (high do) is the "cousin" of middle C (do), so this is not a different note.

Introduce Do Pentatonic on chart and staff. Penta means five, there are five notes: C (do), D (re), E (mi), G (so), A (la). 


Guided/Collaborative Practice (“We Do”):

  • With the class, identify the solfege in the abstracted melody of “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” Then, figure out the absolute names. Allow students to refer back to solfege and absolute names chart.
  • Guide students to sing the abstracted melody in solfege and absolute names in small chunks.

Independent Practice (“You do”) or Group-work with deliverable:


  • Instruct students to split into smaller groups and practice performing abstracted melody on the staff. Students can self-reflect on mastery of performing the pentatonic scale and share with group mates. Students can use the self-reflection rubric in the google slide to guide them.
  • Sing that abstracted melody as a whole class one final time. 

Activity 3

Teacher-led Instruction (“I do”): 

  • Review rhythms from the previous unit. 

Guided/Collaborative Practice (“We Do”):

  • Perform four-beat rhythm patterns that include Ta Ti-Ti Ta-a and Z with hand clapping or on rhythm sticks. Students echo the four-beat rhythm patterns.
  • Perform four-beat rhythm patterns but do not speak the rhythms. Instruct students to echo back the rhythms while clapping or playing on rhythm sticks.

Independent Practice (“You do”) or Group-work with deliverable:

Fill out Google Form Exit Pass




  • Formative - informal observations of students (whole class time) and their group work.
  • Summative - Unit Summative at the end of Lesson 3.
  • Exit task: Google Form Exit Pass