May's Activity of the Day

  • Activity of the Day

    Walt Disney's Fantasia

     We are continuting on with movie music week and learning today about Walt Disney's Fantasia and Fantasia 2000. This a #ThrowbackThursday because third graders watched the Sorcerer's Apprentice in October and fourth graders watched the Beethoven's Fifth in Feburary.

    Fantasia 1940 movie poster

    The first Fantasia movie was released November 13th, 1940. It featured animation for 8 pieces of classical music performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra under the direction of Leopold Stokowski. Disney originally intended to release the Sorcerer’s Apprentice as a “Silly Symphony” short, but it was going to be too expensive. So he decided to create an entire feature film. Originally it was meant to be an ongoing concert series, but WWII caused production problem and consequently, the series was dropped. The second Fantasia movie, Fantasia 2000 was released in 1999 and revived the original intent of Walt Disney. It is noted for its use of CGI and hand drawn imagery. This version is performed by the Chicago Symphony under the direction of James Levine.

  • Activity of the Day

    Movie Music Composed by John Williams

    john williams picture

    This week we are continuing to learn about movie music and today's music was all composed by the 5 time acadamy award winning, and 50 times nominated,  John Williams! Some of his movie music compostions are Jaws, ET, Star Wars, Superman, Dracula, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones, Home Alone, Hook, Jurrasic Park, Harry Potter, and many many more! 

    John Williams Biography by the DSO Kids

    John Williams Biography pdf

    John Williams full list of movie music

John Williams BSO Jaws

John Williams Film Night BSO

  • Activity of the Day

    This week we are learning about movie music and since today is Cinco De Mayo let's explore music of Mexico! I hope you enjoy the book Miguel and the Grand Harmony, by Matt de la Peña. This book shows how Miguel came across his first guitar. The story is an origin story for Disney Pixar's movie COCO. While Coco celebrates the holiday Day of the Dead I love that movie celebrates the power of music.


    Activity of the Day

    Happy Star Wars Day!

    This week in music class we will explore movie music! May the fourth (force) be with you! Today is the perfect day to celebrate the iconic music of Star Wars composed by John Williams. Pick one or more from the lesson ideas below.

    1. Watch the Star Wars Medley played on boomwackers (How fun would it be to perform that in music class?!)

    2. Use the listening maps for "Duel of the Fates" or "Main Theme"

    3. Create your own percussion part to the main theme on Chrome Music Lab.

    4. Watch one of my favorite Star Wars covers.


  • Activity of the Day

     "Follow the Drinking Gourd"

    Happy May! Today let's learn the famous African American folk song "Follow the Drinking Gourd". 

    First: Learn the meaning of the song

    Second: Enjoy watching the Reading Rainbow episode

    Third: Learn to sing the song- Follow the Drinking Gourd Song and Lyrics

    Follow the Drinking Gourd was a song that used secret code to provide instructions on how to escape slavery. The drinking gourd reffers to the hollowed out gourd used by slaves as a water dipper. In the song it is the code name for the Big Dipper star formation, which points to Polaris, the Pole Star, and North. The song's directions enabled fleeing slaves to make their way north from Alabama to the Ohio River and then North to freedom. The song was originally published in 1928 by H.B. Parks. In the song Peg Leg Joe, the underground railroad operative, moved from plantation to plantation just north of the Mobile, Alabama working as a journeyman laborer. This work was a front for Joe's true task: teaching slaves the Drinking Gourd song and marking an escape route.

    Follow the Drinking Gourd Lyrics