As children come to learn more and more about how music is put together, they will begin to have new ears to hear any music. They add critical thinking skills to their musical experiences and will enjoy many kinds of music. They also come to understand and love music as they have hands on experiences creating their own music. They can have that experience through private lessons or by just doing some of the fun lessons that I will share.

The lessons will center on the Elements of Music: Beat, Rhythm, Style, Melody, Expression, Form, Timbre, Harmony, and Texture. You can watch as children become confidant at discussing these elements and hearing them in the music they listen to each day. They will enjoy using these elements to create their own music.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Carnival of the Animals Day 4+

Now it is time to make some fun of your own!  The children now know that you can use instruments to describe an animal.  So it is time to do exactly that!  I like to encourage them to choose an animal that was not in Carnival of the Animals so that they have to create their own ideas.  So let's just imagine a few:

Rabbit - hopping around on a xylophone or keyboard?

Snake - slithering through the grass - how about a mallet rubbing itself along a xylophone or a maraca shaking softly to create the sound of the snake slithering but all of a sudden it becomes a rattlesnake ready to attack!

Mouse - tiny little sounds- high notes on the piano or any other instrument you have?

Horse galloping - mallets playing on wood

Get the idea?  This is an exercise in creativity.  There is no right or wrong.  It's time to explore musical sounds and they can be played on a regular instrument, a pan, a wooden chair, or anything you can imagine that will create the effect you want to create.

With older children, especially if they play an instrument already, then it is fun for them to explore how they can do this on that instrument.  But with young children, anything is fair game.

Now if you really want to have some fun, try doing a shadow puppet type theater and let the children make their own animated videos of their music.

Here is a good example of using black paper cutouts with a white sheet and backlight to make an effective shadow puppet show:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dUcz2W9acAQ

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