Greetings from the music room! This was an exciting week of singing, moving, and playing instruments! Here are some of the highlights:
Kindergarten students began focusing on steady beat this week. Students learned a chant called Chop, Chop, Chippity Chop and practiced chopping imaginary vegetables to the steady beat. Students were asked to name vegetables for us to 'chop'. Students reviewed the song We Clap Our Hands Together and
were given the chance to attempt playing a steady beat on a chime during this song. Students also learned a new song called My Pony Macaroni. Students patted a steady beat throughout the song while one student pretended to ride Macaroni the pony. When the student 'riding' Macaroni froze, the whole class froze. When that same student began moving again, the whole class continued patting.
First grade students practiced writing and reading quarter notes and eighth notes. Students worked in groups of 7-8 to create patterns of quarter notes and eighth notes using their bodies. Each group was given four pieces of paper; each piece of paper represented one beat. After listening to a four-beat rhythm pattern, students stood on the papers to show the rhythm. If one student stood on a paper, it indicated one sound on the beat (quarter note). If two students stood on a paper, it indicated two sounds on the beat (eighth notes). Students were incredibly successful at completing this exercise! Students also began learning two new songs: Starlight, Starbright, which will be used to practice reading quarter notes and eight notes and the song Hot Cross Buns which will be used to help students find silence in music (quarter rest).
Second grade students learned a new dance called Sasha this week. This dance was a complete change of pace from the dance that they learned prior to the Thanksgiving holiday. This dance contains a lively first half followed by a freely structured second half. Students enjoyed learning to do right and left arm swings and having the opportunity to interact with one another. Students also focused on the new low note (do) this week. Students learned a new song containing this note, Rocky Mountain, and were challenged to respond to a series notes as they were played on the recorder. When students heard the melodic note sol they placed their hands on their shoulders, when they heard the melodic note mi they place their hands on their middle, and when they heard the new low note they placed their hands on their knees. Students were impressively successful with this activity. Next week students will be formally introduced to the melodic note do!
Third grade students focused on reading melodic notes do re mi sol and la this week. Students reviewed the song Firefly by singing the song's words and its solfege. Students were then handed a bag containing six small strips of paper. On each strip was a four-beat section of this song. Students were asked to write the solfege under all of the notes and then sing each pattern in order to place the song in the correct order. While this was a considerable challenge, the collective third grade was incredibly successful at completing this assignment. If there was any lingering doubt about whether or not students were ready to learn a new melodic note, that doubt has vanished! Students also reviewed all rhythms learned thus far by playing a rhythm telephone game.
Fourth grade students learned to play the songs Old Tom White and Merrily We Roll Along on the recorder this week. Next week, students will play Merrily We Roll Along in order to test for their orange belt. Students also enjoyed practicing notes B A and G by playing a few levels of the online interactive game Joytunes. Lastly, students practiced matching notes to their letter names by playing musical dominoes and Go Fish.
Fifth grade began concluding their rhythm unit this week. Students examined the use of fifth grade rhythms in classical literature such as Bartok's Swineherds Dance, Bach's Fuge in G minor, and Gliere's Russian Sailors Dance. Students also enjoyed playing a rhythm game entitled Poison Pattern and learning a new song, Big Fat Biscuit, and its game. Students reviewed all of their dotted quarter/eighth note and their syncopated flashcards and were challenged to read them in a mixed up order. Lastly, students practiced aurally identifying rhythmic patterns in preparation for next week's rhythm post-assessment.
Mrs. Ellis's students continued to work on steady beat and began preparing to learn about quarter notes and eighth notes. Students reviewed steady beat songs We Clap Our Hands Together, My Pony Macaroni, and Dr. Knickerbocker. Students also began learning a new steady beat song entitled Monkey See and Monkey Do. As students are learning about steady beat, an emphasis has been made on students matching Mrs. Aaronson's movements. The song Monkey See and Monkey Do allows students to practice the same concept while copying a monkey! Students also began learning a move and freeze game. Students were to move freely around the classroom until they heard the sound 'short-short long' played on claves. This pattern signaled to students that they should freeze into a statue. This game will help to prepare students to hear patterns of long and short sounds (quarter notes and eighth notes).
Mrs. Ross's focused on reading quarter notes and eighth notes as well melodic notes mi re and do this week. Students learned the song Hot Cross Buns and worked together to arrange themselves on carpet squares in order to show the presence of one, two, or no sounds on a beat. After students had correctly notated the song's rhythm, students were shown the music for this song and challenged to search for the melodic patter mi re do. Students discovered that this pattern occurs three times in this song. After students were able to identify all of the melodic notes in this song, they were challenged to play it on the xylophone. Students also began learning a song called Frog in the Meadow, a song that will be used to practice rhythm and melodic notes do re mi.
Mrs. Muller's students began concluding their rhythm unit this week. Students examined the use of fifth grade rhythms in classical literature such as Bartok's Swineherds Dance and Gliere's Russian Sailors Dance. Students particularly enjoyed watching Russian dancers perform a dance to this composition. Students reviewed all of their dotted quarter/eighth note and their syncopated flashcards and were challenged to read them in a mixed up order. Students also tried singing Land of the Silver Birch and The Canoe Song at the same time. This proved to be a fun challenge for the students.