Duration:  5 - 10 minutes

Age: 5 (for a rudimentary yet valuable and enjoyable attempt) and upwards

Players: The entire group or class but separate into smaller groups of 6 – 10 if possible

  • This requires the members of the group to collaborate on a piece of music, the aim of which is to describe in sound the journey of a train between two stations.  It may be necessary to play this as a version of Conductor with one person directing everyone else.  However, the final aim is to develop the sensitivity of the group to a point at which it can manage itself solely through listening, without the need for external direction.  It can best be played using instruments but will work with voices.
  • Ask the group to imagine a train journey.  Tell them the train starts slowly and quietly, increases in speed and intensity, maintains this for a while, then gradually slows and gets quieter before coming to a stop.
  • Hand out instruments if you are using them.  Ask the group to recreate the journey in sound.
  • If the group masters this game try suggesting that at one point in the journey a passenger gets up and closes the window, making the train suddenly quieter but still fast.  Moments later, perhaps as the train is slowing down, another passenger opens the window again.  Can the group describe all this in sound without a conductor?
  • Tip:  Even if this is not achieved the attempt will be of great value in promoting listening and cooperation.  Carousel and Joining a Movement are good preparation for this game.