Sunday, November 27, 2016

Week Ten in Review (Nov. 7 - Nov. 11)

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

Kindergarten students continued to review loud and quiet sounds by playing the hot/cold singing game to the song Lucy Locket. Students also reviewed how to play up and down on the xylophone and transferred that knowledge to the story Mortimer by Robert Munsch. As the mother, father, brothers, sisters, and police came up and down the stairs to tell Mortimer to "be quiet!" students played up and down on the xylophone.

First grade students were formally introduced to eighth notes this week! After reviewing the patterns of long and short sounds in the chant Queen, Queen Caroline, students were shown that the short sounds (two sounds on a beat) are eighth notes. Students practiced writing and reading eighth notes on the board and reviewed quarter notes (one sound on a beat). Students also learned a fun chase game to the song Gobble, Gobble, Gobble. This Thanksgiving song will be used to help students find silence (a rest) in a song.

Second grade students learned a new dance this week called Sashay the Donut. This somewhat complex dance was a great hit with the students and quickly mastered by them. This dance begins with a do-si-do, a right hand turn, a left hand turn, and a two hand turn. Students were excited be able to apply what they had previously learned to this new dance. The second section of the dance is where the real fun begins! One pair of students act as the leaders and lead a train of partners around in a circle. The sounds of "ooo" that escaped from the students the first time we performed this dance was wonderful to hear! 

Third grade students reviewed melodic notes do re mi sol and la this week through the songs Great Big House in New Orleans and Sally Go Round the Sun. Students decoded the solfege for Great Big House in New Orleans and practiced singing the entire song using solfege. Students also enjoyed moving while singing the solfege for Sally Go Round the Sun. Students began learning a new song entitled I Love the Mountains. This camp song can be sung as a round, students will explore a two-part round next week.

Fourth grade students reviewed notes B, A, and G this week and focused on learning the song Hot Cross Buns. Students learned a four step process for learning a new song:

1. read the rhythm
2. read the letters (in rhythm)
3. read the letters (in rhythm) while pressing down fingers on the recorder
4. play

Students also began testing for their white belt. During testing, students were able to practice Hot Cross Buns by saying the letter names of the song while pressing down their fingers, playing Staff Wars on the music department ipads, or creating their own song using flashcards for the notes B, A, and G. 

Fifth grade students learned a new song with syncopated rhythms, Land of the Silver Birch. Since this song coincides with the students' Native American unit in Social Studies, students were asked to debate whether or not this song is a Native American folk song. Students gave wonderful answers to support and to refute this claim. In the end, students discovered that although the words to the song were written by a woman who's father was the chief of a Native American tribe, it is not a Native American folk song. Students also reviewed the rhythm dotted quarter note/eighth note and finished an improvisation activity using flashcards that contain this rhythm.

Mrs. Ellis's students participated in a student growth assessment this week. Students were assessed one-on-one while the class enjoyed viewing the video Stomp Out Loud. Each student was asked to play high sounds and low sounds on a xylophone. Each student was also asked to listen to a series of patterns played on a recorder and choose the flashcard which they thought matched each pattern. These assessments will be used to show student growth in the areas of high/low and rhythm this year.

Mrs. Ross's students reviewed the chant 2,4,6,8 and the rhythms in this song. Students were also introduced to a series of rhythm flashcards containing quarter notes, eighth notes, and quarter rests. Students were introduced to the five line staff and practiced identifying lines and spaces. Students were then introduced to the melodic notes do re and mi. Students practiced singing three patterns containing these notes. Lastly, students learned the song Down to the Baker's Shop and were asked to find the pattern mi re do in this song.

Mrs. Muller's students continued to practice the rhythm dotted quarter note/eighth note this week. Students reviewed Li'l Liza Jane and The Little Birch Tree. Students enjoyed learning to play the second section of The Little Birch Tree on the xylophone. Once students were successful, they were challenged to play this section as a repeating pattern throughout the entire song. Students also reviewed The Canoe Song and Hill and Gully. These songs, along with the new song Land of the Silver Birch, will be used next week to help students discover a new rhythm called syncopation.

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