Sunday, March 31, 2013


   Christ The Lord Is Risen Today is one of my all-time favorite hymns!  I absolutely LOVE to play this for worship!!  I grew up singing the original version "Jesus Christ Is Risen Today," a 14th century Latin hymn, translated into English, published in 1709 in Lyra Davidica.  Many hymnals include both hymns separately.

Most of the stanzas of Christ The Lord Is Risen Today were written by Charles Wesley, and the hymn appeared under the title Hymn for Resurrection Day in Hymns and Sacred Songs by Charles and John Wesley in 1739. 

   This is a very upbeat version, performed by PraiseCharts Band

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Thursday, March 28, 2013

On My Father's Side....

I just heard this sweet song.  Very appropriate for this week.  Sung by the Barn Again Gang, there are several other of their videos on You Tube.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Don't Stop Believing

Enjoy this rendition of Journey's Don't Stop Believing by Red Hot Chilli Pipers....some pretty cool instrumentation!  (you've got to watch it to see!)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Takeover

Filmed by Athletes for the World, The Takeover is a collaboration between Tempest Freerunning and over 40 Professional Freerunners from 14 different Countries.These teams & athletes came together to create a short film like no other.

Monday, March 25, 2013


Ever heard of freerunning?  For freerunners, the environment is their canvass, and their body the paint brush....take a look.  Looks fun, amazing, freeing!

Sunday, March 24, 2013


Mark 11:1-10

When Jesus and his disciples drew near to Jerusalem,
to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives,
he sent two of his disciples and said to them,
"Go into the village opposite you,
and immediately on entering it,
you will find a colt tethered on which no one has ever sat.
Untie it and bring it here.
If anyone should say to you,
'Why are you doing this?' reply,
'The Master has need of it
and will send it back here at once.'"
So they went off
and found a colt tethered at a gate outside on the street,
and they untied it.
Some of the bystanders said to them,
"What are you doing, untying the colt?"
They answered them just as Jesus had told them to,
and they permitted them to do it.
So they brought the colt to Jesus
and put their cloaks over it.
And he sat on it.
Many people spread their cloaks on the road,
and others spread leafy branches
that they had cut from the fields.
Those preceding him as well as those following kept crying out:
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come!
Hosanna in the highest!"

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Friday, March 22, 2013

HALLELUJAH...Hannah Trigwell

"Hallelujah" is a song written by Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen, originally released on his album Various Positions (1984).

Hannah Trigwell sings this beautifully.  Listen as scenes from Old Testament stories of David and Samson intertwine through the lyrics.  

You might recognize this from the movie Shrek.  If you are like me, you didn't listen to the words very carefully when you watched the movie.  Listen now.  

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Koji Kondo: "The Father of Nintendo Music"

Did you ever wonder who composes the music to the video games that you play?  Well, I've learned about the Japanese composer Koji Kondo from reading the blogs of one of my 6th grade students!  He is best known for his scores in the Mario and Legend of Zelda series.  He has been employed at Nintendo since 1984.  Here is an interview with him...

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Peter and the Wolf

Peter and the Wolf is a favorite Sergei Prokofiev score, written in 1936.  This classic Russian folktale captures the personality of each character in the orchestral instrumentation.  Kindergarteners and First Graders are viewing this performance and learning about the instruments of the orchestra.  There are several versions that are available - Jim Gamble's puppet show is always a favorite, as well as the Russian film by Susie Templeton (available on Netflix!)  We watch and compare/contrast the two versions.  Another version that is excellent is this one, by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.  Conductor Bramwell Tovey also serves as the narrator in this performance.  He is EXCELLENT!!  Besides being thoroughly entertained with the narration and music, what I find so wonderful is that we can see precisely the instruments playing as the story progresses.  Enjoy!  Does this bring back some childhood memories for anyone?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

There Was An Old Lady.....

 Students in 2nd and 3rd grades have been reading a variety of "There Was An Old Lady" books lately.  We have created our own version of the story, using musical instruments.  Click here to see videos of each classes creations! Look at all of those instruments!

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Mental Floss

John Green debunks 50 common misconceptions that most people have about topics such as vikings, exploding birds and peanut butter. Enjoy and floss out all those misconceptions!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Who Am I/Casting Crowns

"Not because of who I am but because of what You've done; not because of what I've done, but because of who YOU are!"

I love this song!  I AM YOUR CHILD!  I AM LOVED!  

Friday, March 15, 2013

What ARE my kids doing when they are online?

As parents, we often wonder just WHAT our kids are doing online...always texting, playing games, they are never without a mobile device! Here's an insight from Ikeepsafe is an excellent source for online safety information. We've used several things in class from this source!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Les Paul's House of Sound

One out of every seven people is creative? Are you the one? This interactive experience that showcases the innovative and creative spirit of Les Paul is the only one of its kind in the world.
Travel along Les’ timeline to see his humble beginnings in Wisconsin to his travels around the world, innovating and experimenting at every stop along the way. Creativity, experimentation, historic guitars, inventions, songs, and the future – we invite you to explore all of these to find the Les Paul in you. -- taken from Discovery World

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A new Keyboard - SEABOARD!

It allows you to bend the pitch, volume and timbre of each key you touch.  It is very intuitive to the touch, sensing the slightest movement.  Developed by London tech start-up Roli, "The Seaboard" has the shape of a familiar keyboard, but the keys are made from a flexible, soft material. for intuitive, fine control, as opposed to blunt instruments like the mouse, or joystick.
This technology has implications for medicine, gaming, anything associated with gestures and wanting to have that physical connection with the technology.
I'm not sure if I'd like the feel of the keyboard after so many years of playing on a traditional keyboard!  It sure would be fun to experiment with though!!

Get Adobe Flash player

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Bringing Fairy Tales To Life

The is a pretty cool video explaining some of the special effects behind the scenes of the TV series Once Upon A Time.  From the IGN website.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Trains and Time

As we are trying to get used to the time change this week, going to work in the dark, here's a short lesson from TED-Ed on how trains standardized time throughout the US and Canada in 1883.  A few years behind Britain...

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Prodigal Son

We can all relate, on some level, to the Prodigal Son.  We may have been (are) one, have known one, have forgiven one, have one of our own.  God's mercy and forgiveness is vast.  Something to ponder as we hear the parable of the prodigal son in today's Gospel reading.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

More Amazing Harp melodies...

This amazing young harpist, Alisa Sadikova, performs A. Hasselman's Hasselmans - Fileuse at the age of 9 years old.  She has already been performing several years developing her awesome talent!  Alisa has several videos on You Tube, so check it out!  

Friday, March 8, 2013

The growing Phenomenon of the INTERNET!

How has technology changed your life in the past 20 years?  Think about the things that many of use daily - a cell phone, an ipad, tablet, or computer, Blue Ray, Bluetooth...the list goes on and on.  Much of my shopping is done online, from Christmas gifts to toilet paper.  If I have a question about ANYTHING, the first place I will research is the Internet.

Technology classes are now MUCH more than what I experienced in school as office skills classes...keyboarding, running an adding machine, stenography!  Now, we include things like how to find reliable online information, blogging, good online manners, cyberbulling, online presentations, video and photo editing, iPad skills to only name a few of the ever evolving forms of technology that are in use today.

As with anything new, technology, i.e. the Internet, has not always been seen in a favorable light!  Fears of losing our writing skills or becoming a generation of people who cannot connect to another person unless it's via text or Face Book are common.  What's your experience?  Has the internet made you MORE social, EXPANDED your circle of friends, acquaintances, and colleagues?  Or have you become a techie hermit, only separating yourself from your laptop when absolutely necessary?

Here is a first news report about the Internet from CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) Prime Time News.  "It's a REVOLUTION!"

First Report On The Internet - CBC Prime Time News from Ivan Riol on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Monday, March 4, 2013


YES!  I'd like one of these!  Sold at MYO.  The MYO armband lets you use the electrical activity in your muscles to wirelessly control your computer, phone, and other favorite digital technologies.You can pre-order one for $149 plus $10 shipping.  Ships late 2013.  

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Anniversary of the adoption of the Star-Spangled Banner as our national anthem.

The bill designating "The Star-Spangled Banner" as our national anthem was adopted by the US Senate and went to President Herbert Hoover for signature on March 3, 1931. The President signed it the same day. The words were first written by Francis Scott Key on September 14, 1814, as a poem titled, "The Defense of Fort McHenry."

The Lord is kind and merciful.
He pardons all your iniquities,
heals all your ills,
He redeems your life from destruction,
crowns you with kindness and compassion.

---From Psalm 103

The message today is a call to REPENT!  Today can be a turning point!  What do I need to change, to turn around in my life?  I want to focus on serving God, show me the splinter in my eye that prevents me from doing this with my whole heart!

Fight the Fade is an alternative Christian rock group from Shawnee, OK, formed in 2009.  They can be followed on Facebook too!  Listen with an open heart of repentance.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Friday, March 1, 2013

Music In Our Schools Month

Since 1985, March has been filled with the sound as music in our schools thanks to this month being designated "Music In Our Schools Month." Sponsored by the National Association for Music Education, the event focuses the nation's attention on the need for and the benefits of quality music education programs.

Locally, MGS has a tradition of decorating grocery sacks so watch for some artwork with your purchases in March!  Students and educators appreciate the support they receive from their families year-round!  Thank you for supporting the arts in your child’s school by attending concerts, encouraging him/her to practice an instrument and sing in the choir!

The benefits of a musical education are numerous.  Here are a few:
Twelve Benefits of Music Education
Music Education Advocacy Resources

1. Early musical training helps develop brain areas involved in language and reasoning. It is thought that brain development continues for many years after birth. Recent studies have clearly indicated that musical training physically develops the part of the left side of the brain known to be involved with processing language, and can actually wire the brain's circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information can also help imprint information on young minds.

2. There is also a causal link between music and spatial intelligence (the ability to perceive the world accurately and to form mental pictures of things). This kind of intelligence, by which one can visualize various elements that should go together, is critical to the sort of thinking necessary for everything from solving advanced mathematics problems to being able to pack a book-bag with everything that will be needed for the day.

3. Students of the arts learn to think creatively and to solve problems by imagining various solutions, rejecting outdated rules and assumptions. Questions about the arts do not have only one right answer.

4. Recent studies show that students who study the arts are more successful on standardized tests such as the SAT. They also achieve higher grades in high school.

5. A study of the arts provides children with an internal glimpse of other cultures and teaches them to be empathetic towards the people of these cultures. This development of compassion and empathy, as opposed to development of greed and a "me first" attitude, provides a bridge across cultural chasms that leads to respect of other races at an early age.

6. Students of music learn craftsmanship as they study how details are put together painstakingly and what constitutes good, as opposed to mediocre, work. These standards, when applied to a student's own work, demand a new level of excellence and require students to stretch their inner resources.

7. In music, a mistake is a mistake; the instrument is in tune or not, the notes are well played or not, the entrance is made or not. It is only by much hard work that a successful performance is possible. Through music study, students learn the value of sustained effort to achieve excellence and the concrete rewards of hard work.

8. Music study enhances teamwork skills and discipline. In order for an orchestra to sound good, all players must work together harmoniously towards a single goal, the performance, and must commit to learning music, attending rehearsals, and practicing.

9. Music provides children with a means of self-expression. Now that there is relative security in the basics of existence, the challenge is to make life meaningful and to reach for a higher stage of development. Everyone needs to be in touch at some time in his life with his core, with what he is and what he feels. Self-esteem is a by-product of this self-expression.

10. Music study develops skills that are necessary in the workplace. It focuses on "doing," as opposed to observing, and teaches students how to perform, literally, anywhere in the world. Employers are looking for multi-dimensional workers with the sort of flexible and supple intellects that music education helps to create as described above. In the music classroom, students can also learn to better communicate and cooperate with one another.

11. Music performance teaches young people to conquer fear and to take risks. A little anxiety is a good thing, and something that will occur often in life. Dealing with it early and often makes it less of a problem later. Risk-taking is essential if a child is to fully develop his or her potential. Music contributes to mental health and can help prevent risky behavior.

12. An arts education exposes children to the incomparable.