Can Do Muses


April 01 2022

My grandmother was born, in what is now Saskatchewan, in 1895.  My great-grandfather grew up on the north shore of New Brunswick.   He came to Saskatchewan by working on the railway as it was being built across Canada.   My great-great-great Grandfather came to what is now Canada in the mid-1700s.    Family legend says he was escaping a charge of sheep stealing in Scotland.     My Great Grandmother did not have 21 children.   But  singing Great Grandma helps me feel like I’m part of Saskatchewan, even though I’ve never lived there.

Folksongs have a way of bringing what is past into the present.  They add colour and life to history.     And, because music crosses both hemispheres of the brain, memory of folksongs has a good chance of outlasting many lessons we learn.

Explore the songs in CanDo Music for folksongs.   Wherever possible, I’ve included tidbits about a song’s story/history to unravel its links to culture and history.

La Cucaracha      Sur Le Pont      My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean        In The Summer    are a few from outside of Canada.

And, explore Canadian folksongs!    Singing our songs helps to bring us together.


Note:  CanDo Music3 is still in the process of being completed.  Some of the songs and lessons are on the site.   Anticipated completion is summer 2022.

Music Basics »

Browse ideas to help understand the most important elements of music.

Teaching Basics »

Ideas about classroom management, assessment, conducting, & performance.

Resources »

songs (mp3, mp4), flashcards, composition projects, student work pages, lesson plans

Each lesson builds on the one before so that concepts grow in complexity through the year.  Practice and review are planned into lessons.  Canadian curriculum expectations are detailed at the beginning of every lesson (and in the overview).  This is a complete music curriculum including music literacy, performance, instrument playing and active listening.  Songs are suggested, but may easily be switched with your own favourites.  As long as the planned teaching points are covered, all curriculum expectations will be met.

Grade 1 - Music, Dance & Drama!

Begin with the basics, for student and teacher. Music, dance and drama combined in 2 fine art lessons per week!

Grade 2 - Music & Dance

Review Grade 1 music concepts then move into growing those concepts through new and familiar music. Focus on solidifying the basics --beat, rhythm and reading rhythm.

Grade 3 - Music

Review music concepts from Grades 1-2 while adding a few new ones. Lots of time in the lessons for using concepts in performance and composition. Music pre-literacy is the focus of the second half of the year in preparation for learning to read the musical staff in Grade 4.

About Can Do

Create your own music lessons using some of the resources on the site, or, if you’re new to teaching music, try following a few of the lessons given here. Whatever you use –my hope is that “Can Do Music” helps to make music in your classroom and life. To learn more about the site and its creations, explore the links below.

~Dr. Lesley J Clare