For Students

Extension Ideas

Below I've written several ideas to take The Marvelous Musical Deli beyond the website and put it into the hands of your students.

The Original Deli Concept - Extension Idea

The Marvelous Musical Deli owes its conception to a wonderful toy made by the fine folks over at Melissa & Doug. They have created an awesome sandwich stacking game and I knew the first time I laid eyes on it that it was perfect for teaching form. The game comes with four pieces of bread, and two each of several sandwich fillings (bologna, cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles, peanut butter, and jelly).

Mellisa & Doug Sandwich Stacking Games
Mellissa & Doug Sandwich Stacking Games - image used with permission

I use the sandwich pieces to physically demonstrate the form of a particular piece of music. I have students listen to a piece of music in its entirety and then we go back to the beginning and little by little we figure out the form of the piece (starting and stopping the music as necessary). Each time we get to another section, I have the kids tell me what section it is (using vocabulary we've used in class - A section, B section, interlude, etc.) and a student is selected to come up to the front of the class to hold up a part of the sandwich. If we come to a section that has repeated, they instantly see that we have to repeat the same part of the sandwich (if the A section comes back in the music, we hold up another slice of bread). If we hear a new section of music, the child who comes to the front gets to pick a new filling for our sandwich. We have had some very interesting sandwich filling combinations in the past!

using the sandwich game in the classroom
using the sandwich game to show form in the music classroom

It took a little bit of time and ingenuity to come up with something to represent the introduction and the coda. I chose to use a plate for the introduction and used the analogy of dining-in vs. getting take-out (introduction vs. no introduction). The coda is represented by a huge toothpick that I DIY'ed (see materials list below for details). I tell my students that just like a real toothpick keeps the pieces of the sandwich together, the coda keeps everything together at the end of a piece of music.

plate and toothpick
wooden plate & DIY'ed "toothpick" to show the introduction and coda of a piece of music

The combination of both a visual and hands-on approach has really cemented the concept of form into my students' heads. They now think of form as something fun to learn about and eagerly ask if we get to play the "sandwich game" when they see the materials sitting out.

To recreate The Marvelous Musical Deli in your classroom, here's what you'll need:

  • Melissa & Doug Sandwich Stacking Games (I own 2 sets - one bought full price and one at a discount from a local children's thrift store.)
  • Large Form Cards - Print in color on cardstock, laminate, and cut out.
  • Sticky-back Velcro - available here, here, and here. (Attach the Velcro to the backs of the form cards. You only need the rough side of the Velcro as it automatically sticks to the surface of the sandwich pieces.)
  • Wooden or plastic plate to represent the introduction. I bought a wooden plate from Hobby Lobby and painted it (similar to the green color used on the website).
  • DIY jumbo toothpick to represent the coda. I bought a package of assorted dowels from Wal-Mart and whittled/sanded the end of one of the thicker ones. I didn't make the end super-pointy since kids were going to be holding it - just enough to make it look like a toothpick. I took a strip of foil gift wrap and cut fringe along one edge of it. Using double-sided tape, I wrapped the strip of gift wrap around the blunt end of the toothpick to make it look like a frill party pick.

Clipart Manipulatives - Extension Idea

Not long after I discovered the sandwich game, one of my favorite clipart designers (Lettering Delights) came out with a Kawaii-style cutesy sandwich clipart set. It was perfect since it included all eight layers of the sandwich used in the stacking game. I took these images and imported them into my Silhouette software so I could cut out mini versions of them. I have had my kids use them for small group work to demonstrate understanding of form. If I make enough sets in the future, I could see myself using them as a tool for individual assessment.

using the sandwich game in the classroom
using clipart as manipulatives to assess student learning

These images are also what make up the graphics of this website (aside from the plate & toothpick - I created those graphics). What i personally own is the Oishii SVG's, but they're no longer available. You can still purchase the clipart set, but it doesn't have all the images the SVG set used to offer. I do offer a guided listening activity that includes a modified set of these small form cards in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

PowToon Videos - Extension Idea

The videos created for this website (as seen on the William Tell page) were all created using the super-nifty website called PowToon. If you are an educator, you can sign up for a free (limited) account. I chose to upgrade to the teacher account so I would have a few more options. PowToon also offers a classroom subscription that allows teachers and up to 60 of their students access to making animated videos. Right now the schools I work at do not have 1-to-1 technology at the elementary level, but I could see myself having my 5th graders create simple form videos in small groups if laptops became readily available in the future. I could also see middle schoolers doing well making their own form videos. Assuming you have access to royalty-free music, the sky's the limit!