Sunday, November 27, 2016

Week Eleven in Review (Nov. 14 - Nov. 18)

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

Kindergarten students practiced playing loud and quiet sounds on a hand drum during the song Listen, Listen. Each child was given a chance to play the drum and was asked to play either loudly or quietly. This song will be reviewed next week as a way to assess students' understanding of loud vs. quiet. Students learned a new song, Oh My, No More Pie!, which will also be used assess loud and quiet. This silly echo song tells a story in which someone runs into all types of problems while trying to get more Thanksgiving pie! 

First grade students reviewed quarter notes and eighth notes this week. Students reviewed the song Bluebells and its game then worked together to write the song's rhythm on the interactive white board. Students also enjoyed practicing quarter note and eighth note patterns by playing a game called poison pattern. In this game a four-beat rhythm is chosen as the poison pattern. Students are to echo all patterns except for the poison pattern. Students enjoyed the challenge of listening for the poison pattern. Students also enjoyed learning a new song Snail, Snail and its game. In this game, students join hands and follow the leader into a spiral. The challenge is not only to create the spiral but to unwind it as well!

Second grade students learned a new dance called The Sweets of May this week. This dance was a great challenge for students because it requires a great amount of awareness, teamwork, and many direction changes. Students also continued to work on singing and identifying the new low note (do). Students began learning a new song entitled Dinah! Students learned a body percussion pattern to this song and practiced echoing solfege patterns using mi sol la and the new low note. Students also reviewed quarter notes and eighth notes by placing the rhythm to the chant 2,4,6,8 in the correct order.

Third grade students reviewed the song I Love the Mountains and were challenged to sing it as a two-part round. Students were incredibly successful! Students reviewed the solfege for Great Big House in New Orleans and began learning a new song, Firefly, which uses the same melodic notes (do re mi sol and la). Students also reviewed three patterns containing these notes and practiced playing them on the xylophone. Lastly, students took a pre-assessment on musical form. This assessment will be used to show student growth in the area of form this school year.

Fourth grade students finished testing for their white belt (Hot Cross Buns) this week. Students enjoyed practicing notes B and A by exploring four new levels of the online interactive web game joytunes. Students also learned a new song called It's in the BAG. Using the four step process for learning a new song introduced last week, students were able to learn and memorize this song in approximately 10 minutes. Students enjoyed trying to play the song from memory and some students even suggested trying to play the song backwards! Lastly, students began learning the yellow belt song Gently Sleep.

Fifth grade students focused on the Russian folk song The Little Birch Tree this week. Students reviewed the rhythm of this song, explored additional verses, listened to the song in the Russian language, and learned to play the second section of the song on the xylophone. Once students had mastered playing that section on the xylophone, students worked as a class to create a short arrangement for this piece. Each type of instrument was given a special job; we even added wind chimes to the piece! Lastly, students began learning a new song filled with syncopation entitled The Canoe Song. Students learned a syncopated ostinato to this song and were challenged to perform this pattern on egg shakers while the song was being sung.

Mrs. Ellis's students practiced playing loud and quiet sounds on a hand drum this week. Each child was given a chance to play the drum either loudly or quietly. Students did a wonderful job following directions and performing correctly! Students learned a new song, Oh My, No More Pie!, which will also be used assess loud and quiet. This silly echo song tells a story in which someone runs into all types of problems while trying to get more Thanksgiving pie! First students were asked to simply echo after the teacher. Next, students were challenged to sing the same volume as the teacher. For example, if Mrs. Aaronson sang with a loud voice, students were to sing with a quiet voice. Students were once again very successful! Lastly students, began to focus more on steady beat by learning and performing steady beat motions to the song We Clap Our Hands Together and the chant Chop, Chop, Chippity Chop.

Mrs. Ross's students reviewed last weeks material: reading quarter notes, eighth notes, and quarter rests, identifying lines and spaces on the staff, and reading melodic notes do re and mi. After identifying and singing patterns containing melodic notes do re and mi, students were given the opportunity to play all three of these patterns on the xylophone. Students also began learning a new song entitled Great Big House in New Orleans. This song contains the pattern mi re do and mentions pumpkin pie - perfect for Thanksgiving!

Mrs. Muller's students were formally introduced to syncopation this week. Students located syncopated rhythms in Li'l Liza Jane and in The Canoe Song. Students used tambourines to practice playing syncopated rhythms.

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