Monday, October 3, 2016

Week Three in Review (Sept. 19 - Sept. 23)

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

Kindergarten students sang Hey, Hey, Look at Me once more in order to provide students with the opportunity to sing a solo. Students were invited to sing the song for the class as we clapped along to the steady beat. Students had the opportunity to play sandblocks along with the chant Engine, Engine, Number Nine. Students tried to copy the teacher's fast and slow movements with the instrument. When the whole class played together it sounded like a train taking off from and returning to the train station! Students learned a new song for practicing steady beat entitled That's a Mighty Pretty Motion. During this song, students performed the steady beat while standing still (clapping, patting, etc.) and while moving (walking, hopping, tiptoeing, etc.). Students also enjoyed making their voices match the image of bubbles falling to the floor. As the bubbles fell, students made their voices fall. Students especially enjoyed making a bouncing sound when the bubble did not burst but instead bounced on the carpet.

First grade students explored the sound of a ticking clock and how it relates to the steady beat of music. Students performed steady beat motions while moving to a piece of music written by LeRoy Anderson entitled Syncopated Clock. Students also performed a "tick-tock" ostinato (an ostinato is a repeating pattern) during the rhyme Hickory Dickory Dock. Students further related the ticking of the clock to music's steady beat by drawing lines on the board to show the steady beat. Lastly, students began learning a new song entitled A la Rueda de San Miguel. This Spanish song contains a fun circle game in which each child's name is entered into the song one at a time. After a child's name is called, that child must turn around and face the outside of the circle while continuing moving around the circle. The squeals of delight that came from the children as they were asked to turn around were wonderful!

Second grade students focused on reviewing melodic notes sol mi and la and beginning to learn a new low note (do) this week. Students reviewed the song No Robbers Out Today, its sol mi la patterns, and its game. Students also began learning a new song entitled Charlie Over the Ocean. Students were introduced to the song through a series of fish icons on the interactive board. Students discovered that high fish stood for the melodic note 'sol' and that the lower fish stood for the note 'mi.' Students also discovered that there was a new note at the end of the song which is even lower than 'mi.' Students were asked to sing the song while using the hand signs for sol mi and the new low note. Students snapped on the rests. Afterwards, students learned to play the song's chase game and provided musical accompaniment for this game on xylophones.

Third grade students completed the dance to Tideo this week. This song will be reviewed in a few weeks when students begin to learn about the melodic note high do. Students reviewed the song and game Frog in the Meadow this week. Students discovered that this song only contains three melodic notes: mi re and do. Students decoded the notes to this song and transferred those notes to the xylophone. Students also learned a series of mallet exercises for strengthening their fingers and improving their coordination at the xylophone.

Fourth grade students reviewed third grade rhythms through a game called Post Office. In this game, students worked in pairs and were given an envelope containing eight cards with different rhythmic patterns. Students spread all of their cards on the floor and as Mrs. Aaronson played a rhythm on the recorder, students had to identify the correct card and place it into the envelope. The game concluded when students had only one card left. The goal was to have that card match the only rhythm that had not yet been played by Mrs. Aaronson. Students were very successful in this review game! Students also began working on xylophones this week Students learned a series of mallet exercises for strengthening their fingers and improving their coordination at the xylophone. Students reviewed the song Hot Cross Buns and the notes in this song: mi re and do. Students then began transferring this song to the xylophone.

Fifth grade students began the fifth grade rhythm unit this week. Students learned a song entitled Our Old Sow. This song contains one of the new rhythms and a fun chase game. In this game, one student is designated as the farmer and another student is designated as the sow. The farmer's job is to catch the sow in an allotted amount of time and the sow's job is to avoid being caught! The rest of the class stands in rows with their arms outstretched in order to create rows of corn. At the sound of a bell, the 'corn' students turn to the side in order to shift the rows of corn. Students enjoyed the challenge of trying to strategize in an ever changing corn maze. Students also began working on xylophones this week. Students learned a series of mallet exercises for strengthening their fingers and improving their coordination at the xylophone. Students reviewed the song Hot Cross Buns and the notes in this song: mi re and do. Students then began transferring this song to the xylophone.

Mrs. Ellis's students reviewed the songs for practicing steady beat that they learned in week two: Cobbler, Cobbler, Johnny Works with One Hammer, That's a Mighty Pretty Motion, and Snail, Snail. As the student's ability to keep a steady beat is a prerequisite for learning to read rhythm, much practice with steady beat will occur at the beginning of this year. Students also used the song Snail, Snail to explore the highs and lows of their voices. Students were given a piece of tan colored yarn and asked to create the snail's slime trail. Some students made trail's with many loops, some with zigzags, and some with straight lines. Students enjoyed trying to make their voices match the shapes they had created. Students also enjoyed following bubbles with their voices. Learning to follow shapes and imitating rising and falling sounds with the voice is an important step to learning to read pitches on the music staff.

Mrs. Ross's students reviewed the song Closet Key and its game. After playing the game, students prepared to read quarter notes and quarter rests through a reading exercise on the interactive white board. Each time students saw a door with a key, they were to say "click." Each time they saw a door with no key, they were to remain silent. Next week this will be transferred to quarter notes and quarter rests. Students also experienced patterns of quarter notes, quarter rests, and eighth notes by echoing four-beat body percussion patterns. Lastly, students performed movements to the steady beat of Fossils from Carnival of the Animals. Students were asked to recall as much information about the song as they could. Students named the instruments of the song, what the song was about, and even recounted details about the video! Well done!

Mrs. Muller's students focused on reviewing mallet technique and rhythm this week. Students reviewed the mallet exercises for strengthening fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination learned in week two. Students also reviewed the placement of a chime at the end of each phrase of the song Rocky Mountain. Students also reviewed all rhythms from the third grade curriculum by reading and clapping examples that will be used next week in a game called Post Office. This game will challenge students to identify a rhythm that has been played on a recorder. Students were also introduced to a new classroom percussion instrument named the cajon. Students were given a demonstration of this instrument and enjoyed watching a portion of a video in which six Peruvian men played the instrument.

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