Cardio Drumming Activity for Grades K-5 – “Baby Shark” Theme

Jennie Graves at MSA West Elementary School here with another one of my lessons I wanted to share. This time I wanted to let you know how awesome Cardio Drumming is for students. I teach kindergarten through fifth grade.

There are many different routines you can do with cardio drumming; however, “The Baby Shark Song” has been my students favorite. The fifth grade students even loved this routine as a warm-up. The routine did take a little longer to teach for my kindergarten and first grade students. I have included the lesson plan as well as the video of one of my kindergarten classes performing the routine.

Suggested Grade Level: K-5 (depending on students). My 5th graders used this as a warm-up and loved it.

Purpose: I will work on my rhythm while maintaining a steady beat. This basic routine will prepare me for more challenging ones in the future.


NOTE: For this activity, I purchased 17.5 inch exercise balls and used 10 gallon buckets that are about 18.5 inches wide. You can also use the 21.5 inch exercise balls and use 19 gallon buckets that are about 22.25 inches wide.

As an alternative for the 10 gallon buckets, you can use a laundry basket OR purchase smaller exercise balls or beach balls and use 5 gallon buckets.

I also used an electric inflator to pump up each of the balls. This high volume compressor was powerful enough and made it easy.

cardio drumming

Instructions for Cardio Drumming

I teach a cardio drumming unit once a year; however, once the routine is taught it can be used as a warm up throughout the year. I have included a video of my class performing the routine, and these are the written steps I use for the Baby Shark song.

Baby Shark
Hit sticks together not on the ball. Switch from right to left side.

Mommy Shark
Hit sticks at the same time on the top of the ball (alternate right and left side to make it harder).

Daddy Shark
Hit the sticks at the same time on the side of the ball (cross arms to make it harder).

Grandma Shark
One hand behind your back, hit only one stick on the top of the ball (alternate right and left side to make it harder).

Grandpa Shark
Hit only one stick one the side of the ball. The stick needs to stay still to hold the ball on place (alternate right and left side to make it harder).

Let’s Go Hunt
Hit sticks together above you head while walking around the ball and base.

Run Away
Hit the sticks on the top of the ball while sliding (shuffling) around the ball.

Safe at Last
Hit both sticks on the right side of the ball and make a rainbow to the other side of the ball. Repeat on the left side.

That’s the End
Alternate right and left stick hits on the top of the ball. Alternate right and left sticks hits of the side of the ball. Repeat.

Variations: If necessary, students can be seated or kneeling during the routine or 2 students can share one ball.

Additional Cardio Drumming Activites

Gummy Bear:

Whip and Nae Nae:

Uptown Funk:

Chicken Dance:

About Jennie Graves:

I am a Physical Education teacher in Plaquemine, Louisiana who loves crafting, my students, my family, and riding on the back of my husband’s Harley Davidson. I currently live in Addis, Louisiana with my husband Chris and our three kids: Abby, Wyatt and Kameron. This is my 15th year as an Elementary P.E. teacher. I got my Master’s Degree in Kinesiology from LSU. Go Tigers!

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8 thoughts on “Cardio Drumming Activity for Grades K-5 – “Baby Shark” Theme

  1. HI,

    I LOVE THIS! I am starting it with my kiddos tomorrow. I wrote out my lesson and how I plan to go about my class but do you have a typed copy of the other dances? I so appreciate how the baby shark is written out.

    Thanks in advance!

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