Thursday, January 29, 2015

Learning Through Music and Art: Doug Goodkin

My good friend Lise Ullman, a music educator in California, shared in her blog Every Child Needs Music, the collaboration between herself and Doug Goodkin to produce a TEDx video - 2 years ago now.  What Doug said then is still true now, and I thought it was worth sharing!  (also check out Doug's blog, Confessions of a Traveling Music Teacher!)

What stuck with me most was the notion of giving children that inner discipline that is developed through music.  Not only that, but they begin to sense who they really are in context with this world.  They are not wandering aimlessly anymore, but develop that feeling of value, and positive contributions to the world around them.

Click the photo below to go directly to Lise's blog, and think about what YOU can do to be an advocate for music education in your community!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

"I knew you were Treble when you walked in...."

Third graders have been working on learning the names of the Treble Staff.  We've done the usual "Every Good Boy Does Fine" and FACE mnemonics.  I find that pointing and using their hands as a hand staff helps to put a concrete action to the concept.  We have developed a routine of language and action, counting, naming, pointing to each finger and space to coordinate to the music staff. 
I used Denise Gagne's Learn and Play Recorder app as part of my introduction to the note names of the staff. 
 Interactive practice is included as well and was fun to use on the SmartBoard.  Another game that we use for challenging ourselves in both speed and accuracy was Staff Wars.  
This game can be personalized to either Treble, Alto or Bass Clef.  This was a fast-paced game and very challenging! The Star Wars connection excited the students.  It was very popular!
Either one of these apps works well as a whole class on the SmartBoard or with students iPads used individually or in pairs.

Any connection to the music of today will be an instant winner with the students!  Two videos that they have especially enjoyed are "I Knew You Were Treble" by Jeannette Young and the parody of Meghan Trainor's music "All About That Bass (Clef)".  Students instantly sang along, enjoying the parody of songs they listen to all the time on their own!  Enjoy those videos below!