Friday, October 12, 2012

3rd Grade- "Variations on America" by Charles Ives

Next week the Third Grade will be traveling to Wheaton College to hear the Symphony Orchestra perform.  One of the pieces the orchestra will be performing is Charles Ives' "Variations on America".  Ives wrote this piece when he was 17 years old!  It was then arranged for orchestra by William Schuman to "create more variety" (exerpt from Music Express Magazine October/November 2007).  We will hear the orchestral version next week at the concert.

"Variations on America" is based on the song "America (My Country 'Tis of Thee)".  This song is the theme of the piece can be heard in all 6 variations, each a little different than the one before.  Some variations are sad, some are fancy!  Some variations start sad and then become happy! 

The students use a listening map to help organize the sounds they hear.  The listening map for "Variations on America" tells students about the mood of the music using smiley faces (Music Express Magazine, Octoer/November 2007).

 Students moved bingo chips to show which part of the music was heard.  They especially loved the variation with the Spanish flavor!  There was much dancing!

Pictures of our field trip will be posted to the blog at the end of next week.  I am looking forward to our trip and hope the students are too!

5th Grade- Drumming

In 5th Grade, students have the opportunity to experience new instruments during music class time.  We started this year with our world drumming unit.  This unit travels through all of the district elementary schools during each school year.  We have these drums until October 26, when they will leave Lincoln.  The students have been having a great time and are excited to be playing fun rhythms and songs.

These students are playing the Djembe and Conga drums. 
Ask your 5th Grader to tell you which drum is which!

Fast hands in action! 

I am hoping to post a video of our playing one of our favorites soon.  Not only do we play the drums but also the Shekere and Agogo Bells to add in a complement.  Coming soon: more pictures and videos!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

"Monster Mash" Listening

Students in Kindergarten, First and Second Grades have been listening to the song "Monster Mash" by Bobby "Boris" Pickett.  Pickett released this song in 1962, making this song 50 years old- JUST like Lincoln School!!

Students were able to show what they heard in the music by coloring with rules.  Each part of the listening house has been colored according to what they hear. 

This student heard music that was loud and colored the shutters red.

This student heard music that was soft and colored the shutters purple.

I like this activity because I get to see what they hear.  It sounds funny, but it's true!  Here is a nearly finished product:

From this picture, I can tell everything from if the music was loud or soft and if the student liked the music or not!  If you are a parent of a Kindergarten, 1st or 2nd grade student, watch for this page to come home in the next week or so.

Friday, October 5, 2012

4th Grade- Bobby McFerrin

Many students have asked for the link to the video we watched of Bobby McFerrin performing live.  Click the link below to watch this impressive performance!

Live performance of "Drive"

4th Grade- Bobby McFerrin

4th Graders learned all about Bobby McFerrin, an amazing vocalist.  Most adults know him as the 'Don't Worry Be Happy' singer.  Yes, he is the composer of that piece but did you also know he is the sole performer of that song?  He used his voice in as many ways possible to create all of the vocalizations found in that song.  Don't believe me?  Click on the link below to explore with Bobby McFerrin's voice!

Don't Worry Be Happy Game

2nd Grade "Step in Time"

In September, 2nd Grade Singers learned the song 'Step In Time' from the musical, Mary Poppins.  Students discovered that reading music can be difficult, especially when the verses are written on top of one another!  We sang the song and practiced following the words all month and now we are experts!  As a treat, we watched this live performance of the Broadway Cast of Mary Poppins when they performed on a recent season of Dancing with the Stars.

 Dancing with the Stars- Step In Time

Presto Largo

Here is a fun video about tempo, or speed.

Presto Largo Video