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Showing posts from 2019

End of the year survival guide

Let's face it, you've had it. Time to register the grades and just have fun. I recently discovered these songs and sites. It would be wrong of me to keep it to myself. Enjoy!

Open strings on ukulele are so much fun to play! You can do all your so-mi-la songs, so-mi songs, do-mi-so songs, do-mi-so-la songs on uke open strings! So write out some in stick notation and put on a backing track. Pluck away.

Step 1: tutti reading the rhythms
Step 2: tutti reading numbers in rhythm
Step 3: 30 seconds of practice for the children
Step 4: put on the track and play it over and over.
Step 5: play the stick notation piece interspersed with kids improvising on the open strings in any way that is non-strumming. They can pluck, pinch (two strings) and explore.

Ukulele a la Timberlake These two Justin Timberlake songs are clean and only use two chords!
Can't stop the feeling
Play 8 C chords and 8 a minor chords. Easy peasy. When there is no highlight, just pat the ukulele on the off-beats.…

Black History Month: Duke Ellington

My two-year professional development goal is to develop 8 sub plans that a non-musician substitute can use and still be effective and musical. This is my Duke Ellington plan. It's fine for K-3 and consists of two parts: creative movement to Ellington's music performed by Ellington and his orchestra, and a reading of the picture book, Duke Ellington as the children do an Ellington coloring page.

The plan is below. You are free to use it yourself but please, have your friends print it off this site themselves. My goal is to get more readers.

Black History Month: Marian Anderson

Marian Anderson is an American Classic. Her contralto voice is beautifully controlled and a gift from God Himself! But God put that voice in a brown body, and that was terribly inconvenient for racist America. So Marian Anderson suffered. And America suffered because she was kept from us.

Racism is part of American history and part of the American culture. We have a Black History Month to acknowledge that black Americans are indeed Americans. Marian Anderson was a great American Opera Singer, just as amazing as Beverly Sills or the great divas of Europe: Lily Pons or Maria Callas. She was great like Yo Yo Ma is great on cello or Itzak Perlman is on violin. She's a great singer, not a great "black" singer.

Sorry to start off with a rant, but I've just been witnessing so much racism lately that I think this needs to be said. If you think it is too "political," I guarantee you are a white person. If you are offended, feel free not to read my blog. But I hope y…