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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

"Himno Nacional Mexicano" (5th Grade)

Dear 5th Graders,

As we know, this anthem presents many challenges, both in the melody and the lyrics. Below is an accompaniment that we will be using in class. I hope you will also take the opportunity to practice at home as well.





Thursday, February 13, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!



Kindergarten, 1st Grade, and 2nd Grade students worked with this song this week. Our youngest students continued their work on keeping steady beat, by using the song for a circle game where they pass a bean bag. Our 2nd graders used the song to continue learning about form (how songs are put together). All students discovered the shape of the melody by moving a "Valentine" along the steps shown below.

Play the recording above, sung by some of our 1st and 2nd graders, and see if you can hear when each step is used?


Monday, February 10, 2014

Verse Compositions for "Snow is Falling"


This is a student-composed verse for "Snow is Falling". Students were to write lyrics that related to the subject of the original song. Then students composed a melody for their new verse using only the notes F, G, and A. Limiting the number of pitches helps students compose a more "tuneful" melody. It also leads to more success in notating their melody as they continue to work on reading the staff.

Next, students will learn how to use their new verses to create a performance of "Snow is Falling" in Rondo form.


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Awesome Xylophone


Students have been using an app called Awesome Xylophone for a composition project. The project has been set-up with multiple stations. At one station, students learn to play a song called "Snow is Falling" that we sang in class. At a second station, students write lyrics that will become a new verse to the song. The third station, is for students to compose the melody for their new words. As students progress, a notation station is organized so that students can put their new verse down on paper.

Since the xylophones are necessary for multiple stations, the iPad's allow us to set-up another instrument station that is more personal; a setting that is very conducive to composition.