Beacon Lesson Plan Library

It is All in the Call

Brent Johns


Students have an opportunity to show mastery of square dance skills by calling a square dance of their own in a non-threatening environment.


The student designs and performs folk and square dance sequences.


- CD or tape player
- Songs of slow and fast tempo without words. These can be traditional square dance songs or contemporary songs.
- A call poster consisting of all square dance calls that the students learned during the square dance unit.


1- Prepare a call poster that lists all of the square dance calls that students have learned during the square dance unit.

2- Obtain a record players, CD player, or cassette player.

3- Obtain two songs without words; one should be fast tempo while the other should be a slow tempo. These songs can be traditional square dance music, however, it will be interesting for your students if you use more contemporary music.


1. Begin the class by reviewing the square dance calls that were used during the square dance unit. Demonstrate each call if neccessary and have each call written down on a large poster that was prepared before hand.

2. Divide the class into groups of 8 and have them get into their dance squares.

3. Designate a number for each person in the square. Everyone in the square will have a number 1-8.

4. Explain to the students that during the song you will give each person a chance to make square dance calls by calling their numbers and letting them make the calls for 30 seconds. Every 30 seconds, call another number. That corresponding person begins to make the calls. Tell students that they should make at least three different calls during their 30 seconds.

5. Begin by playing slow tempo music and giving the students a chance to practice calling. Call the numbers in order every 30 seconds.

6. After each student has had a chance to practice, play the fast tempo music. Once again, call out each number every 30 seconds and make sure every student has a turn to call.

7. After the song is over, play it again so that students may have a chance to call for the final time and be assessed for the lesson.

8. Conclude the lesson by reviewing some of the calls that were done, especially ones that were called the most.


Assign one person to each square. This person will be the assessor. He/she will write down each call that is made by each person in the square. Each caller should be able to make three different calls during the 30 seconds.
You may want to have the assessor switch with someone else in the square after each song is played so that everyone will have a chance to call.
After each group has gone, the assessor should turn in his/her sheet which can be used as a summative assessment if the teacher feels that students are showing mastery of the benchmark.


Call around your city to see if there are any square dance clubs. Invite a caller from these clubs to come and talk to the students about calling a square dance.
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