The grade 1 and 2’s are putting the final touches to their animal rap rhythms. The students have been working on their animal raps over the term. Each class has already created a backing track in Garageband have recorded their small group and whole class raps. Stay tuned for the final mastered recordings.
The voice is one of the most versatile of all instruments. As a music educator I love the way students have complete agency over their creativity when using their voice to express themselves. The creative performances that you can hear below are from grade 5/6 students. Working in small collaborative groups the students were first given a series of 4 sketches. Each group was then to choose one and using varying voice sounds create a short composition to match the sketch. The next phase of the unit the students still in their collaborative groups then had to draw their own sketches on A3. These sketches were then used to create new voice soundscape compositions. When these were mastered the students were then give a different sketch created from students from other classes and again were to interpret the sketches into voice soundscapes. Below are some examples.
Continuing on from last weeks focus on exploring sound and various sound colours (timbre) the preps this week applied their knowledge and creativity to this image depicting the sounds of a city. Leading up to this the students listened too and analysed a fantastic piece called “The Little Train Of Caipira” by Villa Lobos. The music describes traveling through the Brazilian mountains on a steam train. Then the students in small groups were given a copy of the City Sounds and set a task to come up with various voice sounds to match the sounds depicted on the image. After a whole class discussion on which sounds would better suit each of the objects. I then conducted the students through the performance. See below for Prep G’s performance.
Some of the most exciting music ever written has been for the genre of science fiction. John Williams; Star Wars, ET and Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, come to mind when thinking about music and Sci-Fi. Over term 1 grade 5 and 6 students have used a number of technologies to create short compositions that represent the characters, setting and atmosphere of their planned science fiction narratives.
Core to my philosophical beliefs as a music teacher is the idea of demystifying the role of the composer so that the students themselves can be composers too. As in other areas of the curriculum students are taught to be writers, readers, mathematicians and historians. One sure way to encourage students creative thinking process is to allow them to collaborate with others to create short compositions. This can be done through using tuned and untuned percussion instruments. However, technology can empower students by giving them agency to arrange and compose through computer software tools such as Garageband and Soundation.
For their compositions the grade 5 and 6 students used Soundation. Its a powerful online music generator, that allows the students to arrange a number of pre recorded sound samples and loops.The electronic nature of these loops were ideal for the sci fi sound the students were trying to portray.
When planning their Sci Fi narrative the students worked in small groups or pairs and used a fantastic mind mapping tool called https://www.text2mindmap.com. Using this plan/outline the students then each week composed short vignettes to support the characterisation and atmosphere for each section of their narrative.
Please listen to some examples are below. However, you can find more at the bottom of the page
Preps Go Bananas! The preps have been amazing considering we are only 3 weeks into school. A highlight has been Rhythm Detectives and the ‘Hello’ Song. However, their favourite song has to be Banana’s
Over the first couple of weeks grade 1 and 2 students had the opportunity to conduct he class ‘Gibberish’ orchestra. Using green for start and red for stop they were able to control the orchestra. The conductors also had signs that read ‘opera’, ‘mouse’, ‘slow motion’, ‘fast motion’. This added another dimension to the Gibberish orchestra allowing the student who were conductors to use their creative thinking to create interesting sounds.
The grade 3 and 4’s have been enjoying their drama and musical games as well as the new vocal warm up tongue twisters. They have also begun to learn a new song ‘Wake Up’ which, I have to say, was sung beautifully at this mornings assemble after only learning it last week.
Grade 5&6’s have begun their exploration of Science Fiction. Last week the students activated and shared their prior knowledge around the theme of Sci Fi. This week the students will be engaging in a mini inquiry so that they have the necessary background knowledge to then begin their planning of their Sci Fi narrative of which they will then compose music for.
Wow! It’s been a fabulous start to the beginning of the school year that is Music@Bell 2014. The students have been involved in a myriad of drama games, rhythm games, singing games and songs. Its so great to go over and especially teach some old favourites to the new preps. The students have loved games such as Rhythm Detectives , Concentration Elimination, Heads Up and everyone’s favourite Pass The Beat Around the room.
The grade 3-6’s were extremely creative with their drama activities/games where they where restricted by the fact that they were not allowed to talk for the whole lesson. ‘Yeah Right!” I hear you say 😉 but they actually were able to do it. It’s not easy for a small group of 12 students to form the shape of a speed boat with driver and acrobatic water skiers being pulled behind it.
There was lots of thinking to be had as well with this terms thinking routine ‘See, Think, Wonder’. This routine forms the basis of the students weekly musical analysis and appreciation.
Was great to hear so many students singing well at the last whole school assembly and the 1/2’s were amazing with the ‘hello’ song as well. I am looking forward to continuing working with the students at these assemblies as there is nothing more uplifting than singing as a mass group and its a great way to start the week.