Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Loud and Soft--patting the floor, circle time

For Kindergarten and 1st grade, the first unit is Loud and Soft. Think about it. What if all kindergarteners and first graders understood the concept of loud and soft?? Wow! What a difference it would make in our homes and in the classrooms! So this is an extremely important first concept for them to grasp.

To start the unit, we are going to do the Circle Floor Pat, (this is a glorified name for "simon says sit on the floor and pat the floor")  :)
Here's what we did:

Have students sit on the floor in a circle--criss cross applesauce. Lead them in patting the floor with different forcefulness levels: very soft like touching cotton candy (or petting a puppy), hard like squishing a bug, and in the middle--normal. Vary between these and use the words hard and softly to describe how much force they should use when patting the floor.

The girls loved the "petting-the-puppy" soft pats and the boys loved the "squishing-the-bugs" hard pat. It was a win-win situation!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Day one---Done!

First day of school went great!

4th, 5th and 6th grade:
Gave each student a blank nametag. Along with their name, they had to draw the note that matched their personality. These were the descriptions:
    Whole Note Personality~ One who enjoys sitting back and watching.  One who can do one activity for a long time without being bored.
    Quarter Note Personality~ One who goes along with everyone else. Is very dependable and steady.
    Eighth Note Personality~ One who gets bored very easily. Doesn't like to sit still very long. Enjoys being where all the action is.

It was amazing to see them think about themselves in that way. Can't wait to see if they really who they think they are!

2nd and 3rd grade:
Sang 2 different Name Game Songs. The favorite was Shoo-li-loo. We also sang Down By The Bay. They loved the guitar accompaniment!

Kinder and 1st:
Sang Make New Friends, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Came up with lots of "on the fly" stuff to keep our hands busy. :)

Now to make plans for next week. I have just enough time as their sub to complete one entire unit. I'm thinking of doing Lego Rhythms with 4/5/6, Call and Response Songs with 2/3 and Loud/Soft with K/1.

I keep reminding myself, Fundamentals! Don't forget to stick with the Fundamentals!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Guess who's back, back again!

Well, this is the year that all 4 kids are in school. Amazing.
But now, what to do?

I am back in the music classroom as a long term sub at a local elementary school!

It's kindergarten through 6th grade. Where to start? The regular teacher is on maternity leave, and hasn't had time to set up the classroom or her grade book yet, so I'll start there. :) Next, I'd better get crackin', because they called me with 24 hours notice! Here are my thoughts:

First day of school  priorities:

1. Set up classroom procedures (how to enter/exit classroom, classroom etiquette, etc.)
2. Songs. You have to sing on your first day of music!! But what songs to sing??? Hmm.. I'll have to think about that one. Where are my John Feierabend books?
3. Name Game. I've got alot of students' names to learn.
4. Music Trivia. Everyone likes to go home knowing something new.

That should do it.  I'm so excited!