Wednesday, September 26, 2012

5th Grade Week 5 -- Beginning our compositions

The remaining weeks in 5th grade music will be spent on our compositions -- each student will get a chance to apply what they have learned about melody, harmony and rhythm in creating a four part 8 measure piece, which we will hopefully get to play in class.  

The first goal, and this weeks homework assignment, is to create 4 measures of melody.  To that end I am posting a link to a cool online keyboard you can use.  Remember we are not using F and B's or any of the black keys.  Remember also the three elements successful melodies include:

They have contour.

They have repeating rhythm pattern.

They resolve to the home note (more on this next week).

To use the keyboard click on the link below (Note -- the keyboard can be played with your mouse or by using the middle row of keys from A to ":

Cool interactive keyboard!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Three Minute Recorder 4 -- "Improvisaton"

Here's a second video that will show how to use the four notes we have learned to improvise.  We'll do a good deal more with this on Friday.  Go, jazz cats, go!

Three Minute Recorder 3 -- "E"

Hi third graders and ensemble members.  Here is the first of two videos I would like you to review before class on Friday.  This one has to do with making the E, a note that will allow us to play songs in a minor mode.

Constructing melody tutorial

Hi fifth graders.  As promised here is the keynote presentation we saw in class so you can  review the elements of melodic construction.  It should help you with the homework.

Fifth Grade Week 4 -- Constructing Melody

Today in 5th grade music we continued our discussion about how melodies are constructed.  We talked about three characteristics of conventional melody -- that they are made up of repeating rhythm and pitch patterns, that they have contour (rising and falling), and that they resolve to the home note.  Each class had an opportunity to create a melody -- something they will be doing individually in a couple of weeks.  They were also given a worksheet in which they are asked to guess the missing measure of music from 8 well known songs.  The goal is not that they be able to figure out what the songs are (although I am curious to see if they are able to do that) but to deduce which measure goes with what songs based on the conventions of melodic construction.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Three Minute Recorder -- Lesson 1 and 2

Hi Third Graders -- as I mentioned in class, I will be using my blog to provide instructional videos you can use at home to improve your recorder playing.  Lessons 1 and 2 focus on the basics of how to hold the recorder and cover the first three notes I'd like you to learn -- B, A and G.  As the name indicates, all the videos are about three minutes long, so I hope you'll find a few minutes between now and next week to give it a try!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Fifth Grade Week 2 -- The rhythm of our school rules

This week in fifth grade music we continued our discussion of rhythm pattern as they relate to notes and rests,  In order to complete our final composition project, the students will need to develop at least a basic understanding of rhythm, melody and harmony.  I always begin with rhythm because it is the most accessible of the three concepts -- we practice it whenever we speak.  And as the kids learned spoken phrases like the rules at Third Street School can be easily manipulated into something musical.

For next week each class will, working in small groups, develop several spoken words and percussion pieces, that will be organized in a "rondo" around the central musical idea pictured above.  Should be interesting.  Video is a possibility.