Last week Rachel (the 2nd grade teacher I get to work with) and I spent a couple hours planning our first unit. Rachel had mentioned during the CITA workshop how she might like to have some activity at the start of the school year to bring the students together as a class. I mentioned a motion activity that I thought we could modify from a Dalcroze Eurythmics class I took several years ago.
I sketched out a sequence of activities I thought might work before we met. When we got together Rachel was able to help me understand what was going to be feasible within the contexts of time we have and abilities of our second graders. I revised the lesson plan based on her input and also looked up the Music and Language education standards and made a small change in the lesson to incorporate one additional language standard. Rachel and I also spent some time talking about other units we might created throughout the year, scheduling, buying some instruments for her class, and some books and other reading activities we are interested in doing.
This week I spent my prep time formally typed up the lesson and looked up the Arts Standards that it would fit. I was surprised to learn that the National Music Standards were rewritten in 2014. I originally learned the 1994 Arts Standards when I was a Music Ed major at UWEC, and had recently taught these same standards to my own Music Ed students at Bemidji State just a few years ago. This was my first experience with the new Music Standards from 2014, so it took a while for me to navigate! My first impression is that the basic content is still the same, but the format has been drastically revised so it took a while to find what I was looking for.
It was also interesting to read the Language standards. I was completely unfamiliar with those, but found that the lesson we created pretty easily met 2 of the language standards with only a small amount of modification. (Basically using a computer to publish our song lyrics in the classroom.) The lesson plan Rachel and I came up with can be seen here.
Looking forward to implementing our lesson and seeing how it evolves when 20 second graders enter into the equation! I was also excited to get a hold of a keyboard on loan for Rachel's classroom for this year. Also we have our first Teaching Artist meeting Friday, so I'm looking forward to that as well.