• Wednesday 6/10:

    This week, let's look at music around the world!

     

    Who doesn't love GIANT instruments?

    Check out some of the biggest instruments the world!

     Baroque Contra-Bassoon

    Octo-Bass

    Sub-Contra Bass Flute

    Taiko Drums

    Stalagmite Organ

    "Titanic" Tuba

     


    Tuesday 6/9:

    This week, let's look at music around the world!

    Today, check out some of these different string instruments that can be found in different parts of the world and see what you notice about how they are similar and how they are different.

    Russia- Balalaika

    India- Sitar 

    France- Hurdy Gurdy

    Greece- Lyra

    China- Gu Zheng

    Japan- Koto


    Monday 6/8:

    This week, let's look at music around the world!

    Today, check out these two very different instruments:

    Alpine Horn- Switzerland

    Glass Armonica - United States (invented by Benjamin Franklin!)

    What do you notice about them? What do they sound like? Why do you think we don't see them very often?


    Friday 6/5:

    Today, use this link to play around with how complicated or simple the rhythm and notes are in a song! Click the question mark at the top for directions, or see if you can figure it out yourself!

    NYPhil YPC Variation Playground


    Thursday 6/4:

    When we use all these music basics we've been practicing, what is happening in our brains?

    What happens when you play an instrument?

    Check out this TEDtalk to find out!

    What Happens to Your Brain When You Play an Instrument


    Wednesday 6/3:

    It's been a while since we've visited the Chrome Music Lab.

    https://musiclab.chromeexperiments.com/Experiments

    Try something new out today, and see if you can figure out what 'music basics' are used! 

    Does it rely on a steady beat? Do you choose the notes? Do you have to count and feel rhythms? What else?


    Tuesday 6/2:

    Let's use this week to strengthen our MUSIC BASICS!

    Today, focus on rhythm by choosing a link or two below to practice playing along with!

    HINTS:

    1. If it's just you playing, focus on one or two of the instruments. If you have people joining you, everyone gets one!

    2. Make up your own instruments- don't worry about having what they say you should play! Anything that can make a sound can work for this! Forks on a book, a bowl with a lid, a box of rice being shaken... whatever you've got is just fine!

     

     

    Hungarian Dance

    Alla Turka

    Can Can

    Eine Kleine Nachtmusik

    Radetzky March


    Monday 6/1:

     Let's use this week to strengthen our MUSIC BASICS!

    Today, focus on reading notes by choosing a link or two below to practice!

    Practice Quiz

    Practice Quiz- Bass Clef (for Trombone, Baritone, Cello and Bass)

    TEDtalk: How to Read Music

    Game- Classics for Kids

    Notation Training

    Musicards- Flashcards


    Friday 5/29:

    Let's wrap this week up with a little more explanation about the Folk Music that Woody Guthrie and others were famous for. Head over to BrainPop to see what all that is about!

    BrainPop- Folk Music  (username aldenschool password duxbury) 


    Thursday 5/28:

    Since Monday was Memorial Day, let's focus on Patriotic music this week!

    One of the most famous Patriotic songs is The Land is Your Land, by Woody Guthrie. Woody Guthrie wrote more than 1,000 songs, including "So Long (It's Been Good to Know You)" and "Union Maid." After serving in WWII, he continued to perform for farmer and worker groups. "This Land Is Your Land" was his most famous song.

    Woody Guthrie- This Land is Your Land- This is a recording of Woody Guthrie himself singing his famous song!

     

    This Land is Your Land- Sing Along Version


     

    Wednesday 5/27:

    Have you ever wondered where the song America the Beautiful came from? Check out the link below to read about how it became a song:

    America The Beautiful

     Did you know that some people think that America the Beautiful should be our national anthem, instead of The Star Spangled Banner? Both songs have a rich history in our country and describe important aspects of it. What do you think? 


    Tuesday 5/26:

    Since Monday was Memorial Day, let's focus on Patriotic music this week!

    Did you know that each branch of the U.S. Military has it's own band, and own official song? Listen to Don Schofield, associate conductor of the United States Air Force Band of Flight explain how our U.S. Military bands work:

     

    John Phillip Sousa: American Military Bands 

    Did you recognize some of the songs? Were you surprised by anything you heard? 


    Friday 5/23:

    Friday Fun-  OPERA is all around us! Silly videos, commercials, and more!

    KIDS MEET: an Opera Singer

    Long Haired Hare- Looney Tunes

    What's Opera, Doc?-Looney Tunes

    Commercial- JG Wentworth Opera

    Commercial- Volvo (featuring Queen of the Night Aria from Mozart's Magic Flute)

    Commercial- Extra Gum

    Commercial- Battleship

    Sesame Street- People in Your Neighborhood: Opera Singer


    Thursday 5/22:

    If a MUSICAL is a theatrical performance that uses music to tell part of the story, then what is an OPERA?

    An Opera is also a theatrical performance that uses music to tell the story, but this time, the entire story is told through singing!

    Operas use two types of singing: 

    ARIAS: These are big songs, and they usually resemble the songs from a musical.

    RECITATIVE: These are songs that are used for conversation. They don't sound quite the same as the arias, because they are just people talking (except they are singing!)

    A Musical usually goes like this:

    Song, talking, song, talking, song, talking... until the end!

    An Opera is almost the same, except instead of talking, they are singing too!

    Aria, recitative, aria, recitative, aria, recitative.... until the end!

     

    Listen to these examples of Aria and Recitative. Can you hear the difference between the regular 'songs' (arias) and the talking 'songs' (recitative)?

    Largo al Factotum- The Barber of Seville (ARIA)

    Queen of the Night- The Magic Flute (ARIA)

    Flower Duet- Lakme (RECITATIVE and then ARIA)


    Wednesday 5/20:

    What is a musical? A musical theatrical performance that uses music to tell part of the story.

    The music can help tell the story in several ways.

    So far, we've seen examples of the music giving the audience a lot of background information, and examples of the music giving the character's emotions more depth.

    Another way a song can be used in a musical is to show time passing by.

    That's How You Know- Enchanted

    Do Re Mi- The Sound of Music

     

    Can you tell that time is passing in these clips? Is it a long time or just a short time? What important things happen during that time that needed to happen for the story to work?


    Tuesday 5/19:

    What is a musical? A musical theatrical performance that uses music to tell part of the story.

    The music can help tell the story in several ways. Yesterday we looked at songs from musicals that gave the audience a lot of information to give them a better understanding of what is happening.

    Another way the songs in a musical help the story is by giving the characters a chance to show how they are feeling, like in these examples:

    Oh What A Beautiful Morning- Oklahoma!

    King of New York- Newsies

    Good Morning- Singing in the Rain

     

    How does the song make you (the audience) understand the character's feelings more than if the character had just spoken?


    Monday 5/18:

    Lets talk about MUSICALS and OPERA!

    What is a musical? A musical theatrical performance that uses music to tell part of the story.

    The music can help tell the story in several ways. One way is that it can give a lot of information to the audience so that they are ready to understand the story. Check out the links below to see how much information you find in just one song!

    The train scene from The Music Man

    "Belle" from Beauty and the Beast

    Aladdin- Friend Like Me

     What does putting all the information into one song do for the musical? How does it make the story better for you- the audience


    Friday 5/15:

    This week, we talked about the instrument families: StringsBrassWoodwinds, and Percussion!

    Hopefully, you noticed things about HOW those instruments make their sounds and what they sound like.

    Today, use this video to review them all, together in the full symphony orchestra!

    George Visits the Orchestra

     

    Also, you can use these links to explore more:

    The Orchestra- Classics for Kids

    The Instruments- Philharmonia

    BrainPop-Sort the Instruments!

     


    Thursday 5/14:

    Use BrainPop to explore the our last family: the PERCUSSION family and discover how they make sounds and how many different types there are!

    BrainPop Percussion  username: aldenschool pw: duxbury

     

    Then, take a look at this short video that demonstrates the percussion instruments in real life:

    Common Percussion Instruments of the Orchestra

     

    What do you notice about how percussion instruments make sound? 


    Wednesday 5/13:

    Today, use BrainPop to explore the WOODWIND family and discover how they make sounds and how many different types there are!

    BrainPop Woodwinds  username: aldenschool pw: duxbury

     

    Then, take a look at this short video that demonstrates the woodwind instruments in real life:

    Woodwind Instruments

     

    What do you notice about how woodwind instruments make sound? Do you like the higher sounds or lower sounds better?

     


    Tuesday 5/12:

    This week, let's talk about the instrument families!

    Today, use BrainPop to explore the BRASS family and discover how they make sounds and how many different types there are!

    BrainPop Brass  username: aldenschool pw: duxbury

     

    Then, take a look at this short video that demonstrates the brass instruments in real life:

    Brass Instruments

     

    What do you notice about how brass instruments make sound? Do you like the higher sounds or lower sounds better?

    Monday 5/11:

    This week, let's talk about the instrument families! Today, use BrainPop to explore the STRING family and discover how they make sounds and how many different types there are!

    Brain Pop- Strings.  username: aldenschool pw: duxbury

     

    Then, take a look at this short video that demonstrates the string instruments that appear in most orchestras: Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, and Harp. These are the ones (except for harp) that we teach fifth graders to play at Alden School!

    String Instruments of the Orchestra

     

    What do you notice about how string instruments make sound? Do you like the higher sounds or lower sounds better?


    Friday 5/8:

    Happy Friday! Today, sit back, relax, and listen to this short podcast about a really cool (and one of my favorite!) piece of music by Igor Stravinsky: The Firebird 

    Classics for Kids: Stravinsky and The Firebird

     


    Thursday 5/7:

    Let's take today to practice those note reading skills! Try one of the options below!

    Practice Quiz

    Practice Quiz- Bass Clef (for Trombone, Baritone, Cello and Bass)

    TEDtalk: How to Read Music

    Game- Classics for Kids

    Notation Training

    Musicards- Flashcards

     


    Wednesday 5/6:

    More movie music! Today, become a film composer and write a quick song in CHROME MUSIC LAB to go with one of the images below! Chose the one that gives you the most inspiration about what you should be HEARING while you are SEEING a scene in that location! To share your song, click 'save' and copy the code! You can post it in the comments or email it to me!

     

    Sloth Winning and loosing Merry go Round

    Stormy Seas

     


     

    Tuesday 5/5:

    Yesterday, we talked about the music of Star Wars, written by John Williams. Today, let's look at some of the other amazing movie music he created!

    Did you know he also wrote the music for (click the links to hear!):

    The Indiana Jones series

    E.T. The Extra-terrestrial

    Jaws

    Harry Potter

     Jurassic Park

     

    Pick one of the above and listen to the whole thing. How does the music match the movie it goes with? Think about mood, the story, the characters, where it takes place... If you haven't seen the movie, then what does the music make you think about what might happen?

     


     

    Monday 5/4:

    May the Fourth Be With You!  Activities with the music of Star Wars!

     


    Friday 5/1:

    This week, we looked at how a song is organized. This is called it's FORM. Songs can have many different types of Forms.

    We looked at Strophic, AB, ABC and RONDO form! 

    Form Recap

    Today, take a listen to these songs (or other songs that you like!) and see if you can figure out what form they have!

    Trashin' the Camp- Tarzan

    Linus and Lucy- Peanuts

    Trepak- The Nutcracker

    The Lonely Goatherd- The Sound of Music

    We Know the Way- Moana


    Thursday 4/30:

    This week, let's look at how a song is organized. This is called it's FORM. Songs can have many different types of Forms.

    Today’s form is RONDO form! Rondo looks like this: ABACADA... meaning there is one main section that keeps coming back, with a new section between each one!

    Check out the song: The Syncopated Clock to see RONDO form!

    The Syncopated Clock- Leroy Anderson

    Sycopated Clock Listening Map

    In this song (by Leroy Anderson! Remember him from Sleigh Ride?) the orchestra imitates a clock with a peculiar ticking pattern. The LISTENING MAP above shows the A section in red, with a picture of the clock, because you can hear it ticking! The B section, in blue, does not have the ticking sound in it, or a picture of the clock on the map. We then return to the A section before moving on. The C section, in yellow, shows the clock ringing, before returning to the A section one last time.

    At the end there is a CODA: a passage that brings a piece to an end.

     

    Does the listening map make Rondo form easier to follow? What else do you notice about this song?

    ----------------------------------- 

    Wednesday 4/29:

    This week, let's look at how a song is organized. This is called it's FORM. Songs can have many different types of Forms.

    Today’s form is ABC form! This means there are three different sections in the song, one after another. Sometimes the sections might happen more than once.

    Check out the familiar song: I've Been Working On The Railroad to see ABC form!

     I've Been Working On The Railroad- Pete Seeger

    Section A:

    I've been working on the railroad
    All the live long day
    I've been working on the railroad
    Just to pass the time away
    Can't you hear the whistle blowing
    Rise up so early in the morn
    Can't you hear the whistle blowing
    Dinah, blow your horn

     

    Section B:

    Dinah won't you blow
    Dinah won't you blow
    Dinah, won't you blow your horn
    Dinah, won't you blow,
    Dinah, won't you blow,
    Dinah, won't you blow your horn

     

    Section C:

    Someone's in the kitchen with dinah
    Someone's in the kitchen i know
    Someone's in the kitchen with dinah
    Strumming on the old banjo
    Fee fie fiddle eell o
    Fee fie fiddle eell o
    Fee fie fiddle eell o
    Strumming on the old banjo

     

    Does having three different sections make this song harder to follow? Does it make it easier? Why do you think musicians make a point to figure out where the sections are in a song?

    ----------------------------------- 

    Tuesday 4/28

    This week, let's look at how a song is organized. This is called it's FORM. Songs can have many different types of Forms.

     

    Today’s form is AB form, which is sometimes called Call and Response. Songs with AB form have two different sections, which alternate back and forth (A section, then B section, then A section, then B section… until the song is over!)

    Check out SONG OF THE FISHES to see AB form!

    Song of the Fishes

    Song of the Fishes

    What do you notice about the different sections? Does anything change? Can you tell everytime you go back to the A section?

    ----------------------------------- 

    Monday 4/27:

    This week, let's look at how a song is organized. This is called it's FORM. Songs can have many different types of Forms.

    Today, we'll start with STROPHIC FORM. This means the same melody repeats over and over throughout the song. The words and style might change, but the tune of the song is always the same.

    Our example: The Ballad of Don Gato

    Don Gato reads his letter Don Gato Lyrics

    Check out this (somewhat silly) version of Don Gato on Youtube!

    ----------------------------------- 

    Friday 4/17:

    Remember when you were composers a few months ago when you wrote your own songs? Sometimes kids really get into writing music, and the New York Philharmonic holds a competition to allow kids the chance to have an orchestra play their compositions!

    Head over to the New York Philharmonic's page HERE and listen to a few of the pieces they have up. What do you think about these young composers and the songs they have written?

    -----------------------------------  

    Thursday 4/16:

    Let's use some homemade percussion today to play along to a YouTube video!

    Find the video HERE

    This video calls for: Hand Drum, Tambourine, Claves and Triangle... most of which you probably DON'T have lying around your house!

    What can we use instead?

    Think about what you know about those instruments and what they sound like, and see if you can find some good replacements!

    For example:

    Hand Drums have a heavy, low sound- a big hardcover book might sound similar!

    Tambourine has a shaker sound, so something like a box of rice or pasta might work!

    Claves are wood, so other wooden things can substitute (kitchen utensils, perhaps?)

    Triangle is metal, so other metal things can substitute (silverware, tools, etc!)

    Get creative!

    Once you've assembled your supplies, head to the video and work together with someone to cover all the instruments as you follow the song!

    -----------------------------------  

    Wednesday 4/15:

    Today, let's head back to Chrome Music Lab and check out some of the science behind music and sound!

    Try the SOUND WAVES to see what different notes' sound waves look like. See if you notice a difference between high and low sounds!

    Try the SPECTROGRAM to get a different look at sound waves, and to compare different instruments (and your own voice!)

    Try the VOICE SPINNER to see how speed affects sound, and have fun using the voices they provide or use your own!

    If you notice anything interesting, share it!

    -----------------------------------  

    Tuesday 4/14:

     Did you figure out yesterday's secret word? It was CAGE, for John Cage, a famous composer of the 20th century.

    John Cage wrote music that is pretty different from others we have studied!

    Read about him HERE

    And then watch a performance of his piece 4'33 HERE

    What do you think? 

    -----------------------------------  

    Monday 4/13:

    Today, see if you can assemble the puzzle and then use treble clef note reading to read the secret word! Share it in the comments below- I've set them to secret so you won't be giving the answer away :)

    Secret Word Puzzle

    -----------------------------------  

    Thursday 4/9:

    We studied famous composers a few months ago, and a lot of you learned some really cool things. Beethoven was deaf, but wrote amazing music! Wagner was the only one of his siblings NOT to be put into piano lessons! That song everyone knows from Steamboat Mickey (and the ice cream truck!)? It was written by Scott Joplin!

    But a lot of you noticed something else, too- a LOT of these composers lived a long time ago!

    Author Lemony Snicket wrote a funny, murder mystery featuring the orchestra and all it's instruments using this fact. 

    Watch and listen to me read it!

    The Composer is Dead- Lemony Snicket 

    -----------------------------------

    Wednesday 4/8:

    Did you know that April is Jazz History Month? Hop on over to BrainPop today and learn about the history of Jazz with Tim and Moby!

    https://www.brainpop.com/artsandmusic/musicalgenres/jazz/

    username: aldenschool password: duxbury

    -----------------------------------

    Tuesday 4/7:

    Today take a listen about Ralph Vaughn Williams, an English composer who loved to take ordinary folk songs and turn them into complex, beautiful compositions!

    https://www.classicsforkids.com/shows/shows.php?id=5

    Then, try your hand at the questions that go with it!

    -----------------------------------

    Monday 4/6

    Today, make some music in Chrome Music Lab, this time in the Kandinsky section! Named for the artist Wassily Kandinsky, this music maker turns your artwork into sound. Write your name, draw your pet, whatever you feel like... and see what music comes out of it!

    CML- Kandinsky 

    -----------------------------------

     

    Friday 4/3:

    Today's activity is to sit back and relax (maybe make some popcorn?) and watch the New York Philharmonic play and explain Benjamin Britten's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra!

    https://www.nyphilkids.org/ypc-play/britten.php

    The orchestra starts off with a brief performance before being joined by some speakers and actors to give you a good idea of who Britten was and to explain all the instruments you see in the orchestra.

     

    Two questions to think about:

    1. Benjamin Britten was very influenced by growing up near the sea, and used that to write his music. As people who are growing up by the sea yourselves, do you relate to what you hear in his music? Or is his version of what the sea sounds like different than your own?

    2. What is something new you learned about any instrument you heard in this performance?

    -----------------------------------

    Thursday 4/2:

    Everyone knows the song "Take Me Out to the Ball Game!" But did you know that the part of the song you know is only ONE part? Take a listen to the original 1908 version of the song:

    Take Me Out to the Ball Game (1908)

    And then read about how the song came to be written on the sheets attached below! Use the questions to talk to other people at home about what they already knew about the song- did they know the other words, or who wrote it?

    The last question on the sheet asks you to write your own song for another sport- if you write one, be sure to send it to me, or share it below in the comments!

    Take Me Out to the Ball Game Background and Questions

    -----------------------------------

    Wednesday 4/1:

    Today, lets go way back to November when we talked about melody and harmony! What do you remember? Use this BrainPop to refresh your memory, and try some of the activites!

    BrainPop- Melody and Harmony

    username: aldenschool  password: duxbury

    -------------------------------------

    Tuesday 3/31:

    Be a MUSICAL SPY today! Take a piece of paper and keep track all day of where you hear music, and what you hear! See if you find music anywhere you weren't expecting!

    Music Detective Log Feel free to share your log with me by email!

    -------------------------------------

    Monday 3/30:

    Spend some time in the Chrome Music Lab's RHYTHM MAKER today! See what different combinations you can make and create your own beat! If you make something you like, feel free to send it to us!

    https://musiclab.chromeexperiments.com/Rhythm/

    -------------------------------------

    Friday 3/27:

    Do you know the story behind the famous John Phillip Sousa song "The Stars and Stripes Forever?"

    https://www.classicsforkids.com/shows/shows.php?id=274

    Does it remind you of another important American Song?

    ------------------------------------- 

    Thursday 3/26:

    Today, take a moment to check in with your note reading skills!

    Note Reading Practice- TrebleClef

    Help yourself be ready to rock next time we play Around the World or the Flyswatter Game!

    Remember: Spaces=FACE, Lines= Every Good Boy Does Fine!

     

    --------------------------------------- 

    Wednesday 3/25:

    Have you ever wondered how instruments are made? Check out this video (link below) about how Tubas are assembled! 

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kfdxvNXIyk

    Did anything surprise you about how they're made? 

     

    --------------------------------------- 

    Tuesday 3/24:

    What exactly is a "Rhapsody?" You know it from Bohemian Rhapsody, and maybe Rhapsody in Blue... but do you know what that word actually means? Click the link below to find out!

    https://www.classicsforkids.com/shows/shows.php?id=287 

     

    Check out Incredibox!

    http://www.incredibox.com/

     

    --------------------------------------- 

    Monday 3/23:

    Do you know where country music comes from? Have you ever heard of a singing, yodeling cowboy? Check out this BrainPop about Country Music, then give the activities a try!

    https://www.brainpop.com/artsandmusic/musicalgenres/countrymusic/

     

    Check out The Chrome Music Lab!

    https://musiclab.chromeexperiments.com/Experiments

     

    --------------------------------------- 

    Friday 3/20: 

    To go with the rainy weather we've been having- check out this cool Podcast about thunderstorms in music!

    https://www.classicsforkids.com/shows/shows.php?id=154

    Which composer do you think created the most realistic Thunderstorm?