Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I Know An Old Lady-The Remix!



In First Grade music we have learned the song "I Know an Old Lady".  First we read and sang the book.  Next we used the Old Lady doll to sing the song.  Each first grader got to hold one of the animals and feed it to the old lady when that part of the song came along.  Next, we re-wrote this classic using animals, people and objects that we thought up!  You can see some of the 1st graders' work below.  We are using first grade spelling, so if you can't figure out a word just try sounding it out.





A shark?  A dinosaur?  A piano?  lol.  The old lady was certainly hungry in these new versions.  The lyrics to these new and fun songs are displayed outside the music room door.  The old lady is there too!


Saturday, September 26, 2009

Star Spangled Banner Centers

Each year Third Graders learn about the "Star Spangled Banner".  They learn about its history, the lyrics and the music.  One of the fun parts of this unit is going deeper by working at workstations or centers.
At this station students are using a hot dot worksheet and hot dot pens to answer questions about the history of our national anthem.  The pen tells them (with musical sounds!) if their answer if right or wrong.
At this workstation, students read the history of the "Star Spangled Banner" and then quiz their partner on important facts.

Some of the words in our national anthem are a bit difficult to understand in third grade.  At this workstation students learn words like "rampart", "perilous" and "gallantly".

How many words can YOU create using the letters in the title of our national anthem?  At this stop, students race against each other to create words by rearranging the letters in "Star Spangled Banner".

This station is called "Sing in the Blanks".  Students are given a copy of the lyrics to the "Star Spangled Banner" that has many blanks in it.  Working with their partner (who has the answer sheet) students try to sing all the way through the first verse.  It's much harder than it looks, but third graders did a great job!

On your mark!  Get set!  Write!  At this station students work on memorizing the first verse of our national anthem by racing to copy the lyrics.  There's lots of humming and singing going on.  Many students find it easier to remember the words as they relate to the melody of the song.

Francis Scott Key wrote a poem called "The Defense of Fort McHenry".  This poem later was set to a popular tune of the day and eventually became our national anthem.  Writing poems about America can be fun!  At this station, students are inspired by pictures and a collage of patriotic words.  Then they write their own poem about America.

Who was Francis Scott Key? Was he a musician? How on earth did he happen to be stuck on an enemy ship during a battle? At this center, students read together and learn about the composer of the "Star Spangled Banner".

Get Star Spangled Banner Workstations for your classroom!

Friday, September 18, 2009

God Bless the U.S.A.

Today we had our annual patriotic assembly to recognize/celebrate Patriot's Day (9/11), National Anthem Day (9/14) and Constitution Day (9/17).  The finale was a sing-along that ended with "God Bless the U.S.A."


Band practices "America" for Patriotic Assembly



I love these guys!  Just a few days into practicing "America" for a patriotic assembly, these guys rock! :-D  Keep up the good work!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

We Got the Beat!

Second Graders demonstrated their steady beat skills as well as their ability to improvise in this activity.  Studens worked in cooperative groups and listened to several different musical selections.  Each student in the group took a turn leading the others in steady beat patterns.






Cups for Clapping



I saw this activity at a workshop last weekend. The green cups are rests or "shhh" notes. The blue cones are quarter notes. We moved the cones around the cups to create patterns we liked, then "read" the patterns by clapping and resting. First graders really enjoyed this activity and were able to pick up some composition grids and create their own patterns on paper. Rock on First Grade!
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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Band Begins








Beginning band students are often tutored by returning band members at the start of the school year. This allows me time to walk around the room and work with students one on one. At the beginning of school we elect officers for band. The officers have special duties each day in class that help keep things running smooth. The president conducts in my absences, leads small group rehearsals and sectionals and fills in for the other officers. The vice-president fills in for the president and is responsible for passing out music. The secretary takes daily attendance and handles the correspondence for the group. The treasurer assists me in keeping track of reed and valve oil charges.
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