Familiar Games with a Musical Twist


Do you have a bunch of game pieces just sitting around at home? Maybe your kids have gotten bored with them, or if you’re like me, maybe they’re leftover from your childhood.

Teaching Tip: If you’re looking for a quick game that’s easy to setup or explain during lessons… use something that’s familiar instead of something new.

Rather than donating old games to Good Will or just letting them collect dust in a corner, try using them in your studio with a musical twist. You can also use game concepts that students already know how to play, such as “I Spy” or “tic-tac-toe” —  these require very little set-up and can be easily added to a lesson plan.

Here are a few favorite game ideas from fellow music bloggers:

Musical Candy Land

Love this idea by D’Net Layton of Layton Music. All you need is an old Candy Land board, a permanent marker, and a set of music flashcards. D’Net details her easy rules for the musical version on her blog — Musical Candy Land Rules. Plus she has a free set of PDF flashcards!

While you’re visiting Layton Music, check out her rules to a musical version of Tic-Tac-Toe. She has a variety of concepts that this game can include: key signatures, land-mark notes, note names, etc.

Middle C I See!

My little nephew loves to play “Spot It.” There are so many different versions out there. One of my favorite bloggers, Brandy Woods, has a great musical version of this game available on TPT. (P.S. – Be sure to follow her on FB! She always shares great ideas and links.)


You can read about how Brandy created her version of “Spot It” here on her blog: Middle C, I See! and you can find it for sale on TPT in this link. I’ve bookmarked this for the next time I have a young piano group lesson.

Musical Jenga

This is one of my all-time favorite games to play in the studio. My students always ask to play this during group lessons. Joy Morin has a great blog post explaining how to turn a regular set of jenga blocks into a music game. Check it out here: Musical Jenga!

Here’s a funny slow-mo video of my students playing this last year:

I found my set of “Jumbling Towers” at one of those dollar-type stores. It was only $6. You can find them at most stores like Target or Wal-Mart.

This summer I’m going to surprise my students with a HUGE VERSION of Jenga that I found at my local ALDI store a couple of weeks ago. If you have an ALDI nearby, check to see if they still have any sets left! They were only $39.99, which is a steal when you consider how much the Giant Versions normally cost.


This is the one I found at ALDI!


This one is 2.5 feet tall! Kind of pricey though.

Well, I hope these games gave you some ideas! 🙂

Let me know YOUR favorite re-purposed music game or concept in the comments below. Maybe I’ll blog about your idea in the future! Thanks for reading, and have a great day!



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