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Let’s Write a Song
Title – Let’s Write a Song
By – Kenneth E Fox
Primary Subject – Music
Secondary Subjects – Math
Grade Level – 4-5
Concept / Topic To Teach: A Fun Lesson on Music Writing/ Composition
General Goal(s): One of the problems with teaching musical notation is that it is NOT information that the students feel that they need to know, but by explaining to the students that they will need to know the “rules” in order to write a song for their classroom teacher, they will learn how to relate notation to information that they need to use.
Specific Objectives: The students will learn how to write a measure of music based on given rules. The students will also learn where high notes and low notes appear on the staff.
Required Materials: *Blackboard *chalk *an instrument (band or orchestra)
*camera *Blackboard staff marker
Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): The teacher can start by asking how many students know how to write a song. Today, you will learn how to write a song, then I will play it for your classroom teacher.
Step-By-Step Procedures: After the lead-in, the teacher will start by writing the “rules” on the blackboard;
Measure=music contained between two bar lines
(Written) four over four=4 beats in the measure and the quarter note gets the beat
(Written) quarter note=one beat
(Written) half note=two beats
(Written) eight note=1/2 beat
(Written) quarter rest=one beat
(Written) half rest=two beats
The teacher will then call up small groups (a single row of students) and tell them to write a measure, giving each student a note. The teacher can assist or guide them but tell them that the notes can be placed anywhere within the staff as long as they follow the rules. The teacher can then involve the rest of the class by having them check their work and decide if their measure “follows the rules”. The teacher can then call up the next group and have them begin on the next measure and so on ¼ ¼ ¼ ¼ ¼ ¼ ¼ the teacher can then add the last measure as a resolution and then play the song but first, ask each group to raise their hands when they hear their measure being played. Since the blackboard has to be erased, the students will want a record of their song, so the teacher can then have each group come back up and point to “their” measure for the teacher to take a picture. When the regular classroom teacher returns, the music teacher plays the class song for him/her.
Plan For Independent Practice:
Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Since you have a picture of the student’s song, later or at another lesson you can play their song again and ask the students what they liked about it or didn’t like-have open classroom discussion
Assessment Based On Objectives: The teacher will play the student-composed song on an instrument and comment on its originality.
Adaptations (For Students With Learning Disabilities): This is a great lesson for LD students because there are no restrictions for note placement.
Extensions (For Gifted Students): Gifted students can expand into using combinations of eighth notes and rests.
Possible Connections To Other Subjects: Connections to Math are apparent here.
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