Full disclosure: I do not remember where I originally saw this idea. If it came from you, let me know so I can give you credit!
I started doing the Thanksgiving Concert project a few years ago with my band and orchestra students as an optional assignment. The students must perform a “concert” for family and/or friends over the Thanksgiving break. I give them a blank “program” to list the pieces they play and a place for the audience members to sign their names. Both the students and families have had so much fun with this! The kids are very creative finding their audiences too – everything from a large group at Thanksgiving dinner, to grandma over the phone and the family pets. This is not a required assignment, instead I tell the students they will get a surprise upon returning to school with a completed program – a candy cane or something similar.
This year there will be a second option, instead of filling out the paper program they can record their performance on Flipgrid and take a selfie with the audience! I’m interested to see if any students try this option, as many of them love using Flipgrid.
My theory is, whatever I can do to get kids playing their instruments at home and involving their families is a good thing. The parents enjoy hear their kids play, and the students love sharing their music. It’s a win-win!
Here is a link to the blank program if you would like to try this with your students, just make a copy of the Google Doc and edit as needed. I’ll also include a link to what the Flipgrid topic would look like. Be sure to let me know how it goes!