Saturday, January 26, 2013

West African Music, Stories and More Instruments!

In several classes this week, we read Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears, a story from West Africa. 

This Pinterest/Orff-inspired lesson allows students to create sounds and drama for the story.  For younger classes, we read the story and created sounds first with our bodies.  For older students, we jumped right in and began making sounds on instruments to represent the characters and various parts of the story. 

Below is a video of a second grade class creating sounds to the story using their bodies.  Their creative idea for the line "wake the sun so that the day could come" was too cute to not post. 

Because I am rather soft-spoken, you may not be able to hear my voice.  What I'm reading is as follows:

"King Lion said to the council,
'So, it was the mosquito
who annoyed the iguana
who frightened the python
who scared the rabbit
who startled the crow
who alarmed the monkey
who killed the owlet--
and now Mother Owl
won't wake the sun
so that the day can come.' "

Next week, we will continue by acting out the story with the sounds we created on instruments.  More to come!

Also--big news!  Our African Drumming project with Donors Choose has been fully funded!  This means our music room will acquire four new wonderful African drums.  I am very excited to use these in class when they come in!  Thank you to those who donated and supported our project!

Monday, January 14, 2013

African Drumming Project Progress!

We had another donor give to our African Drumming project!  Thank you, again, to our current supporters, and thank you in advance to those of you who will help!

Click here to view and donate to our project.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Lines, Spaces, and Call/Response

Kindergarten and first grade classes learned about lines and spaces on the music staff this week.  We did some fun things to learn about the music staff.  See the Kindergarten/First Grade page for more details!

In second and third grade classes, we discussed call/response and learned an African song that uses call/response (Che, Che, Koolay).  Students also had the opportunity to create their own rhythm to be used for call/response.  See a video on the Second/Third Grade page.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Polar Express Day!

It is a much anticipated occasion among students and staff alike, Polar Express Day.  Everyone, and I mean everyone wears pajamas like the children in Van Allsburg's classic book.  Kindergarten students parade the halls with homemade boxcars creating our very own Polar Express that chugs along through the building.  It is a fun day, to say the least.

Below is a photo of my wonderful special area teammates and me on Polar Express Day, 2012.  They are a wonderful team, and I look forward to what the rest of the school year has in store for us!