Sunday, March 13, 2016

Week Twenty Five in Review (Mar. 7 - Mar. 11)

Greetings from the music room! It was a another exciting week of singing, moving, and playing instruments! Here are some of the highlights:

Kindergarten students began learning a song for solo singing entitled Who Took a Piece of My Pumpkin Pie. Students enjoyed the mysterious nature of this simple song and the game that accompanies it. In order to play the game, one child goes into the center of the circle and hides his eyes. Then a child in the circle is chosen as the 'thief.' At the end of the song, the chosen child sings "I took a piece of your pumpkin pie." The child in the center must then guess who the mystery singer is based on the sound of the singer's voice. Students were incredibly successful at identifying the mystery singer! Students also began learning two new songs to practice steady beat: Wishy Washy and My Little Boat. Students began learning a chant entitled The Ship. This chant will be used to expand students' knowledge of classroom instruments as well as work on the difference between pitches that go up and pitches that go down.

First grade students enjoyed learning a new song entitled Walk and Stop this week. This playful song, which encouraged students to stop and freeze at predetermined locations within the song, allowed students to practice moving to the steady beat and differentiating between high and low sounds. If the song ended with a high note, students were to create a tall statue. If the song ended with a low note, then students were to create a short, low to the ground statue. Students explored the range of their voices by following the ups and downs of a ribbon stick. After a few demonstrations by Mrs. Aaronson, students were then asked to lead this activity. Some students created patterns that were challenging for the class to 'sing' accurately! Students also searched for the new high note (la) in the song Snail, Snail. After students could successfully locate this note, they filled in the rest of the notes with the melodic notes sol and mi. Given the students' great success with this activity, they will be formally introduced to la next week!

Second grade students used the song Traffic Lights to practice melodic notes sol mi and la. First, students sang the song using solfege and hand signs. Then students were asked to write short melodies on the five line staff by using the interactive white board. Students did a great job helping each other remember all of the rules for writing the notes sol mi and la on the staff. Students also looked for the appearance of the new low note (do) in the song Charlie Over the Ocean.

Third grade students focused heavily on the melodic note low la this week. First, students echoed short melodies that included melodic notes low la do re and mi. Then students decoded the solfege to the song Big Fat Biscuit and played the song's game while singing the song using solfege. Students also began learning a new song entitled Captain, Don't Side Track Your Train. This song is being used to reinforce melodic note low la. Students were asked to find the sentences of the song that matched the pattern mi-mi-re-do-low la and were very successful! Students also finished learning the Heel and Toe Polka! In addition to learning the remainder of this dance and experiencing the form of folk music through movement, students were led in a discussion about how to be respectful to all classmates while dancing.

Fourth grade students focused heavily on brass instruments this week. Students reviewed the characteristics of brass instruments, particularly those that differentiate them from woodwind instruments. Students also worked with partners to make lists of woodwind and brass instruments and to practice differentiating between the sound of woodwind and brass instruments. The instrument that caused students the most difficulty was the bassoon. Due to its low sound, many students mistakenly identified it as a brass instrument. Students also began learning about percussion instruments and the characteristics of this instrument family. Lastly, students voted to have a recorder day next Tuesday.

Fifth grade students, after listening to 15 minutes of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony over the course of several classes, discussed facts about this famous composer. Topics covered included the composer's importance to the beginning of the Romantic music period, his deafness, and his musical talent not only as a composer but also as an organist and pianist. Additionally, students focused on completing their memorization of the music for Annie Kids. Students also learned their spots on the risers and practiced entering and exiting them at the correct time.

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