Thursday, December 27, 2012

Peter and the Wolf Lapbook

Today, I made an informal Peter and the Wolf lapbook to help tell the story. I am planning to decorate my room with scenery from the story so we can act it out, but I also wanted to have some pictures of the characters and instruments.

I found some great color pictures of the characters and the instruments here. They are on the last two pages. I was cutting them out today to paste on to popsicle sticks and had the idea to make it into a lapbook.

I love how each character is paired with the instrument and the music is described under the character.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

iPad Apps for the Music Room

Now that I have had time to explore the apps available, I've compiled a list of the ones I use everyday. Some are music related and some are technology related.

Music Apps -Instruments and Games
Marimba- Play a digital marimba

Recorder+ Lite- Play your recorder with the app

Rhythm Repeat Lite- This is a very cool game that works on rhythmic dictation.

Name that Note- Quiz on note names with three different difficulties. Con: You can't select a certain range.

Young Genius- LOVE this app! It has three games: instrument sound quiz, memory game, and a composer quiz. I used the sound clip quiz and the memory game during my instruments of the orchestra unit.

Productivity Apps

AirSketch Free- Allows you to connect your ipad to your projector and draw/write on your iPad to display on the screen. I use this during my middle school lecture classes for guided notes.

Remote Mouse- LOVE this app! This allows you to move away from your computer and still have control of your mouse.

Prezi- Prezis are so fun and this app lets you store all the prezis you create on your iPad, present them from the iPad and create them, or so I've read. I couldn't get the templates to load on my iPad.

Flashcards+ This app creates your own flashcards. Because I was not able to control which notes the kids were quizzed on in Name that Note, I made a set of flashcards using the notes we know. It was incredibly easy. There is even an option to add a time limit per side which makes this seem more like a game.

Recorder Olympics

Edit: See the completed wall in my classroom here!

I once attended a workshop with Paula Crider where she was talking about how she got started in music education. She mentioned that she motivated her students with something she called Band Olympics. They were able to work on developing fundamental skills while competing to make it fun.

I feel like recorder can get boring for those who are still struggling with the basics so during the spring semester my 4th graders are going to start Recorder Olympics, an idea I adapted from Paula Crider's session.

During this unit, the students will complete certain events, ranging in difficultly. They are:

Note Name Relay (naming the notes from the staff in a timed event)
Long Tones (play any note for 16 counts)
Long Tone Low C (play low C without squeaks for 12 counts)
* Special Award* Longest Note Held with One Breath

Play a C scale pattern going up
C scale pattern going down
C scale up and down

Complete "Tricky Twisters" (7 total, see below)
Perform selected echoes
*Special Award* Fastest Tongue

Play a BAG song
Play a song from memory
Play a solo for the class

There is a wall in my room dedicated to keeping track of the events and who has completed what event. At the end of the semester, if a student has completed 1/3 of the events successfully, they have earned a bronze medal. If they complete 2/3 of the events, they have earned a silver medal and all events completed earns a gold medal.

Tricky Twisters
Before Winter Break, we tested on playing a C scale pattern down. They students learned the pattern up but we have not tested on the entire scale (except for some over achievers). I created the Tricky Twisters (the name comes from "finger twisters" as I like to call them) to help get fingers and tongue coordinated while developing some muscle memory. I think this will especially help when using F natural and F sharp. Each set starts with half notes, then quarters and eighths.

Here is the link to the PDF. I uploaded it to Google Drive. Simply open and download.

Recorder Lapbook

I have been so interested in lapbooks lately that I decided to give creating one a try. This book is all about music literacy and the recorder!

Here is the link to the PDF of the lapbook. There are instructions in the file.

The students are able to decorate the front of their book or use this cover. Inside, the students can paste their complete charts and information any way they would like. I intend to leave the folder folded as is in order to maximize space for gluing the contents inside. The back of the lapbook is going to become a place for us to attach sheet music and our own compositions. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Carnival of the Animals

I am preparing for my spring semester lessons and have compiled my Carnival of the Animals resources.

Because all the classroom teachers are going to be covering the SOL requirements, I have correlated this unit with habitats and food chains, two standards in Virginia for 2nd grade


Here is my powerpoint presentation for selected pieces from the Carnival of the Animals.

The last slide of my presentation asks the students to create their own animals piece, including the animal, its habitat and the instrument that represents the animal. I am planning to display these in the hallway once they are finished.

I really like this set of videos. The entire work is available and includes the narration. You can also see each instruments being played.

I've been experimenting with glogster and I created a glog for March of the Royal Lion and Aquarium. I also love this video as a listening map for Aquarium. 

For 1st grade, I am also using Aquarium. We will read "Rainbow Fish", listen to Aquarium and watch the listening map and then create a torn paper fish for our own aquarium (blue paper) in the classroom.

Here is a packet of worksheets and coloring sheets that correspond.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Nutcracker Parachute Routine

This activity has been the highlight of my lessons this week. The kids absolutely love this!!!

Here is a video of my 3rd grade class performing the routine. I taught it first without the music and then we performed it with music. They kept asking to do it again and again.

I used this with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. We finished up our lesson early in 4th and 5th so I taught it to them just for fun. They loved it too! To my surprise, 6th grade saw the parachute in my room and asked to learn it after we watched the video of 3rd grade.

This has really been tons of fun for everyone involved!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Nutcracker

December is finally here and we can finally begin The Nutcracker! I am so excited! Here are my lessons and resources for teaching The Nutcracker to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade.

First, I am using a wonderful iPad app to share the story with my students. It is called The Nutcracker Musical Storybook and it is 2.99 from the app store.

The app allows you to read the story like a book or plays as a movie.

In first grade, we are studying the March and The Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies. I am using the quiz from Beth's Music Notes with my 1st grade. This quiz is so great and has everything I want. Why reinvent the wheel?

In 2nd and 3rd grade, we are focusing on the dances. 2nd grade will listen to 3 dances: Chinese, Russian and Arabian. In 3rd grade, we add Waltz of the Flowers. Each grade will complete a listening assignment for the dances. Here are copies of each.

2nd graders circle their answers for musical characteristics of each dance and then draw a picture of what the music makes them think of. I love having them draw! It is always nice to see what they come up with.

 3rd graders are circling their answers also, but since we just finished our instruments of the orchestra unit, I am asking them to identify an instrument they hear. I also want them to write what the music reminds them of. This sets them up for 4th grade Listening Journals. (I only have 3rd graders for one semester each.)
 After our paperwork is complete, I have a fun parachute routine for the Russian Dance. I am going to attempt this with a 1st grade class and see how it goes.

The routine is as follows: (you can hear where the changes are in the music)

on the accent- jump
repeat 4x

rotate right
rotate left

>- jump
>- jump
>>>> -slam, slam, slam, slam

>- jump
>- jump
repeat 2x

shake left and right
4 counts from the end- parachute up and kids go under

Music in the Movies

In my middle school classes, we have written our own pop songs and studied about the evolution of rap music. Now, we are starting our last unit for the semester...Movie Music!

I am using Music Makes the Scene for some background information and worksheets. The book comes with a DVD of clips and each clip has different music. Using this, we can see how the music really does affect the scene.

Here is my Google presentation on Music in the Movies. I use this with 6th and 7th grade. After the presentation, the students complete a "Ticket out the Door". (That is why some points have **** beside them)