4-Beat Dictation and Form dictation Second Grade Rhythms

Lesson Objective #1 The students will know how to take dictation using a pre-recorded video. They will understand that patterns translate into musical rhythms on beats. They will be guided through the first example and led through the entire process of hearing, repeating, and notating rhythms using ta, ta-ti, rest, and ta-a.

Lesson Objective #2 The students will know how to listen for patterns of rhythm during melodic dictation. They will understand that the rhythmic patterns can be simple while the song can be more complex. They will be led through examples, increasing in difficulty in the forms: AAAA, AABB, ABAB, and ABAC. 

Lung Health

Every time I sneeze or cough, I freak out.
How about you?
This video is to help your students be proactive about their pulmonary health and become better wind players and singers in the process!

Birdsong Listening

How I came up with this lesson Most of us are finding ways for our kids to remote learn. I was woken up at dawn by some amorous cardinals. I thought I was listening to chickadees in danger. I listened and listened. I saw some crows. I heard different calls. Later, I found resources that told me what the bird calls were and learned that I was actually hearing cardinals.

Why the lesson works This activity is wonderful for children and adults to listen for timbre, pitch, articulation, and call and response. Cardinals and chickadees have the same general pitch and timbre, but their articulation and melodic patterns are very different. Same for robins. Native Americans knew the danger calls of all their local birds. Hunting big prey is best, so when they heard a particular danger call, they knew a wolf or fox was near. Using knowldege the natural world to help you understand how to proceed is a theme for this quarantine time. It's also a human trait as old as humanity itself. This les…

Star Spangled #2 with Recorder A note

Lesson Objectives: Students will know the vocabulary for the second phrase of The Star Spangled Banner (SSB) and how to produce the note, A, on the recorder.
Students will understand the vocabulary in the song. They will also understand that A is a note lower than B and producing the note requires one more hole covered on the instrument.
Students will match definitions of words with words in the song.
Students will increasingly sing the second phrase of SSB independently.
Students will sing the first phrase of SSB independently.
Students will practice making A on the recorder and reading I II Z rhythms using notes B and A acappella and with a backing track.

Powerpoint lesson for learning vocabulary, SSB Phase 2

The Lesson Questions this lesson will answer for your students.  The recorder video this week answers the following questions.
How do we change notes on the recorder?
Can you remind me how to play B again?
What's the next note we are going to play?
How do I clean my recorde…

Happy Trees

When school in person was stopped mid-March, I knew we wouldn't return, possibly until 2021. I took the opportunity to congratulate retiring colleagues on a career well-done. I packed up as though I wouldn't see my room until July. Most of my colleagues, however, did not believe that we would not come back until our governor announced it a few hours ago. He announced it in the middle of a staff Zoom meeting. We all listened together. It was kind of nice. It was like we could be there for one another, even with physical distancing.

Our principal had the school adjustment counselor address us immediately. She said, "We are in crisis. The whole country, hey, the whole world is in crisis. And when someone is in crisis, the thing we do is stabilize. She wasn't talking about our students. She was talking about us.

We are in crisis.

So let's self-care. If you like, paint something.  Do you have any paints around the house? If all you have are old house paints and roller…

BSO Homeschool Resources

As many of you try to figure out online learning, we need to share our best resources. Massachusetts is very blessed. We have a courageous and resourceful governor and a world-class orchestra. Both things give me hope.

They have a great homeschooling page. I think a lot of the activities skew a bit older than my K-3 students, so I took one of their videos and made a worksheet. You are free to use them.

Here is their site of lesson plans. Plans have links to the private (unsearchable) videos.

Early Childhood Comparative Worksheets

Kodaly early childhood education stresses comparatives: the opposites we experience in music. Loud/soft, short/long, smooth/jerky, speak/sing, high/low, beat/rhythm. The quarantine has given me the opportunity to formulate some worksheets for children, age 3-6.

Ordinarily, you would have an entire lesson revolve around a comparative. You would draw the children's attention to the comparative with every song or every other song, using the actual vocabulary. Loud/soft is a tough one because "soft" is something children are used to using for tactile texture. Also, high/low is a tough one as these words are used for physical proximity much more often than they are for auditory perception. I find that taking the entire pre-school experience, age 3-6, on comparatives is very fruitful.

Reverse the directions on the same sheet. Have students color only the things that make loud sounds.