I had two classes one for 4-6th graders and the other for K-3rd graders. The actual enrollment was a group of eight 1-2nd graders and a group of mostly 10-11-year-olds. The older kids actually had a lot of interest and talent and was made up of a decent ratio of male to female kids. The younger group had one boy and 8 girls and were basically non-readers with no previous training whatsoever.
My thought at what we would do in our Drama Club classes was just to learn skills and play acting games. But the kids had a different idea. They had seen the Musicals I had done at the school previously and assumed they would be performing a show. I definitely had a problem. What exactly could I do with these students that would seem like a show but not be a main stage production?
So, in desperation, I quickly wrote two mini-musicals. "The Tale of the Country Mouse and the City Mouse" and "The Ants and the Grasshopper." (What else could I do with one large boy and 8 little girls?) We did do skill drills and acting games, but they were more interested in putting on a show. So, that's what we focused on. Simple costumes and rudimentary props and sets worked very well for an in-class recital. The parents came and were suitably impressed. And we didn't have to worry about sound and lighting. Whew!
"The Tale of the Three Billy Goats Gruff" is another show that works well for an in-class production. The intimate rainy-day-stuck-at-home theme is perfect for a small group and small audience.
"The Tale of the Musicians of Bremen" was another easy to produce mini-musical. We elected to do more elaborate costumes and sets, though for this show. My actors were older kids and they worked very hard in order to merit having extras. The favorite song from that one was the one where we also played kazoos.
And if I were teaching Elementary Music again, I would make doing an in-class Mini-Musical part of the curriculum. They are just so much fun!