Musical Chairs in the Classroom

Musical chairs is a great brain break because it gets everyone moving, it's fast-paced, and it requires no prep or money. That's my kind of brain break! I'm not lying when I say that my students constantly ask to play this game. There are two ways that we play in my classroom:

Option 1: My students and I have recently been playing musical chairs with a twist, and they LOVE it! Instead of counting the chairs and students and moving chairs to the side, we keep all of the chairs in the game. I play the music (my go-to song is The Gummy Bear Song because it's upbeat, and most of the kids recognize it) and then they start walking around. I stop the music, and they literally RUN to the nearest seat. The last student standing is out and becomes a referee. This continues until there is one student remaining. Award that student with bragging rights, a little piece of candy, or some other reward. An entire game can be completed in under five minutes.

Option 2: Amp up the first option by throwing in some trivia questions about anything that you want so that students can buy their way back into the game after they are eliminated. For example: We just wrapped up with Romeo and Juliet, so any time a student lost, I'd ask a quick recall question about something from the play. If the student answered the question correctly, that student was able to play again. If the student answers the question incorrectly, they become a referee, and another student answers the question.

Do the chairs move? Yes. Will you room look a little disheveled afterwards? Yes. Is it worth it? TOTALLY. It's such an easy way to have the students out of their seats. I use it between activities, as a warm-up, as an exit ticket, and sometimes when I can just tell that they're having "one of those days." 

Try it out and let me know how it goes. What do you do in your classroom to get your students moving? Leave a comment!


  1. Hey i'm a teacher too just like you and always in search of new ideas to keep my class interactive and fun. Thanks for this and guess this shall be our Friday game :)

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