Videos for Your Non Music Substitute Teacher!

"Help! I have an emergency and I don't have sub plans!"

Does this sound familiar?

I had a normal morning, which consists of hugging my cat, a breakfast shake, and spending time on my TpT store, YouTube channel, and social media.

I drove to work and started feeling dizzy. I got to work and felt like I was going to throw up. The nurse confirmed that I also had a fever.

I had to leave work with 15 minutes notice before the first class started. Thankfully a sub was able to get there, but I had no sub plans in place.

With this list of videos I'm not suggesting you shouldn't plan for a sub. All I am saying is that sometimes we don't have a plan set in place and we just need 35-45 minutes worth of videos for a sub to play for the students. Sometimes there IS a sub plan in place, but the sub doesn't have time to review it before the class arrives. 

1. Bill Nye the Science Guy - The Science of Music

25 minutes long
Explores the science of music
It is from the 90s, but is entertaining!

2. Nigel Standford - Cymatics

5 minutes long
Students will see the effect of sound on the elements

3. OK GO - Upside Down and Inside Out

3 minutes long. 
Band performs a dance choreography on a zero gravity flight. 
When I show this video, I show the two other videos I listed below. I also discuss gravity and zero gravity with my students. They absolutely love it. 
You can download my lesson plan, teacher script, and sideshow here: OK GO Zero Gravity Lesson

4. Wintergatan - Marble Machine

4 minutes long
A beautiful machine with 200 marbles flowing through it to make music

5. OK GO - This Too Shall Pass

4 minutes long
Rube Goldberg machine
Starts with dominoes falling on each other and ends with paint guns

6. Stomp - Newspapers

8 minutes long
People make music with newspapers, buckets, and the human voice
Warning: This video has a slow start.

7. Animusic - Pipe Dream

3 minutes long
Animated music machines.
Very engaging!

8. Vegetable Orchestra

3 minutes long
A group of musicians who make perishable instruments!

TEDx Vienna Performance
20 minutes long
(I wouldn't play the whole video, but I would play the first 3 minutes for the class to see)


  1. This post is incredible. So helpful. I am actually going to be handing my class over to a sub this week and this is perfect! Thanks!

    Chris Edwards

    1. Yay! I'm happy you found it useful.
      Let me know if there are other videos I should add to the list :)

  2. I am not a music teacher but I will sub tomorrow so this will help a lot if there is no plan for me, thank you so much :)

  3. Yes, thanks a ton! I loved this!

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