Music – “This Music Makes Me Think Of…” (Weekly Unplugged Project)

By , March 2, 2008 9:52 pm


This week’s theme for the Unplugged Project was music.

For a long time now, my children have enjoyed playing the “This Music Makes Me Think Of…” game. I invented the game when the children were small. To distract them while driving in the car, sometimes we would listen to music and when that grew old and they started fussing, the “This Music Makes Me Think Of … ” game was born.

The way it works is that you have to come up with an image that the music creates in your mind. For example, I might say “This music makes me think of fish swimming in the ocean. Do you hear the waves? And the movement of their fins? Etc.”

It has become such a routine, that now whenever we have classical or other instrumental music playing, one of my children always takes the initiative and starts by saying: “This music makes me think of birds in the sky looking for their nests.” Then the other child will say: “Well, it makes me think of a car driving along a twisty road,” and so on.

I had thought that this week, it might be fun to ask the kids to draw what they heard in the music, but too much playing with friends intervened, so we didn’t get to the drawing part. However during dinner this evening, we were listening to my favorite Sunday night public radio broadcast of Hearts of Space (New-Age sort of music for those who are unfamiliar with the show) and my daughter actually began the game (unprompted by me).

This time I tried to be a bit less free-form (anybody says what they want, when they want) and tried to steer it in a more “scientific” direction to see what we all would come up with. Since it is very hard to not think of the first image presented when coming up with one’s own, I decided to ask us all to visualize our own image before the first person spoke. This way we would see what each person’s genuine, uncontaminated, musical first-impressions were!

Here are the results for three different musical pieces:

Number 1)

5 year-old: “A merry-go-round horse.”

7 year-old: “Angels dancing.”

Me: “A toystore.”

Number 2)

5 year-old: “Someone getting lost and unicorns coming out of the clouds to find them.”

7 year-old: “Fairies trying to get the flowers to grow.”

Me: “A sailboat gliding on very still water through the mist surrounded by dolphins leaping out of the water.”

Number 3)

(The most interesting – note the similarity between my 5 year-old son’s image and my own…wow!)

5 year-old: “The sun is rising and a river flows under it.”

7 year-old: “An airplane flying through the sky on a bright blue day with the sun shining.”

Me: “The sun rising on a deserted beach with waves rolling in.”

Have you ever tried this with your kids? It is a fun game that can be played anywhere that you hear music, and the results can be quite interesting!


If you participated in this week’s Unplugged Project, please leave your name in Mr. Linky as well as a comment (in case Mr. Linky malfunctions and has to be removed).



Photo thanks to and photographer poxy (photo taken in Iceland)


15 Responses to “Music – “This Music Makes Me Think Of…” (Weekly Unplugged Project)”

  1. Michie says:

    I like your game – I might have to try it with my daughter when she gets a little older. This is my first time trying your weekly theme – but my perfectionism got in the way a little bit!

  2. […] was disappointed the Unplugged Project was Music this week because I couldn’t think of anything creative to do! I don’t play […]

  3. I was intimidated by this one so we kept it simple by dumping out all their instruments in our bed and letting them go wild. As usual I HAD to take pictures!

  4. Becky says:

    What a great game idea! I’ll have to try that during our next long drive.

    Oh, and I’m SO glad to be back into the swing of things! We enjoyed our project this week!

  5. […] We’ve been following along with the Unplug Your Kids activities for quite a while, but I hadn’t made the time to post about it. This week, the theme was MUSIC. […]

  6. Piseco says:

    We love music and are always singing and dancing here! For the project post, I talked about how we like to take a favorite song and turn it into a morning of pretend play.

  7. warillever says:

    Your game sounds like fun. We’ll make sure to try it out when the kids are a little older.

  8. Claire says:

    What a good idea. We’ll certainly be trying that round here.

  9. TopazTook says:

    I left a link — our music activities are pretty simple!

  10. Heather says:

    I love the Game idea!!!! We do several long car trips each year with the kids. They would love this. Thanks.

  11. That is a fantastic exercise! We had fun, too. I love music and Kiddo recently went through a phase where everytime I started to sing he shouted “no singing mommy!”. Fortunately, he seems to be (mostly) over that.

  12. Tamara says:

    Whew! I was running late this week but we really wanted to participate.

  13. coastalgirl says:

    Great idea you had this week….your musical theme reminds me of sitting under the clouds to see what objects you can see, only you were listening to music instead.
    Our contribution this week involved making a didgeridoo and castanets.

  14. Jenny says:

    You and your kids always manage to come up with the neatest projects! Sorry I missed this week, but looks at all those participants! It looks like your Unplugged Projects are really starting to catch on. :o)

  15. […] music was our Unplugged Project theme for last week, this seems to be a very appropriate time to talk about an interesting study that was just released […]

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