Recorder Karate Idea Bank

Recorder Karate Beads - More Trouble Than They're Worth?

Submitted by Karen Waddell, Judith Schneider, Roberta Nadeau

Idea posted 2003-10-09

Q: I just ordered Recorder Karate and am so excited about trying it. I really would like to use the beads, but it seems like it would be a pain to put one on in a hurry. I looked at some of the pictures on, but they weren't able to help me answer my question. Is it difficult to add a bead? Is there a trick to adding a bead quickly? Do you add the beads, or do you let the students add them?

A: Here is what some teachers are doing.

From Karen Waddell

I use the beads and have the children untie the halo hanger, add the bead, and tie it back. I show them how before we begin testing. Occasionally, a child will have a frayed end. I just snip it clean and burn the tip with a match (very slightly). Normally, adding beads does not take up any of my classroom time; the kids (4th and 5th grades) do it themselves.

From Judith Schneider

We use pipe cleaners (chenille stems) to hold the beads. Send it through the zipper pull opening on the case, bend in half, and twist once. To add a bead, slide it down one side of the stem, and push the other end through the bead in the opposite direction. Pull tight. I demonstrate this for the class before we start testing the first day; I help them with the first one if they need it, then they are on their own. The kids that "get it" help the ones who don't, and somehow they all get done! :-) They look really cool.

From Roberta Nadeau

I let the students choose and add their own beads. I use yarn for the regular belts. (Tie yarn around the bell of the recorder. Fold in half to make a loop, both ends go through the loop, and it's then pulled tight.) I then give them a longer black piece of yarn, which is added the same way, and then they tie on their beads when they earn them.

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