While I took piano lessons for many years, I am not what you would call a natural musician. Still, I have seen over and over the positive impact that music can have on students' learning. It has that "Velcro" factor that helps the content stick to the brain.
I spent the summer of 2002 working on staff at Teach for America's summer institute in Houston. I was amazed by all the ways the Corps Members found to integrate music into the content learning with amazing results. Ever since, I have been inspired to try it myself. Below are some examples of the products my bilingual second graders created after a library research study on the planets. We created "La Tierra" together (to the tune of "La Cucaracha") and then the students worked in small groups to create subsequent verses for their assigned planet. They had so much fun and were so proud of our song! It's kind of catchy too!