We had 2 units going at the same time this week! We finished up our story retell compositions. (I'll upload some awesome video performances later!) The compositions turned out great and I think putting everything on different notecards really gave the kids some freedom to have longer or shorter compositions. We let the students use multiple instruments this time, which lead to more sounds overall, but I thought slightly less creative ways of using the instruments. Overall, there were more connection than with the animal compositions earlier in the year and the students made some thoughtful sound choices. Also this unit had the benefit of working with a partner, which demanded a LOT of cooperation and collaboration.
Our second unit was starting to talk about the main idea in non-fiction reading. I started with introducing Beethoven (who some of us call Ludwig) to the students and we listened to a bit of the 1st movement of Symphony 5. Those kids will never hear that again without thinking "The Main Idea."
We just did "Main Idea" work this week. We used 'Lean on Me" and "Why Does the Sun Shine" as examples to find main and supporting ideas. Lean on me was really understandable by the students and they found great ideas. Why Does the Sun Shine was a little advanced in both the science and the vocabulary, but I think they enjoyed the video and song enough that it was still worthwhile. We broke all the "ideas" we came up with into multi-part songs that we performed as a group. Ms. Kelm is really improving on her composition and improv skills as she took charge of the second song on her own! Then late this week it was the kids turn. They finished the week in small groups finding main ideas and supporting ideas of assigned articles and writing their own songs to go with them.
Also: Rachel is really knocking it out of the park with her own musical modifications at this point. Check out her song about light energy! No help from me at all!
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Dr. Erika Svanoe
Teaching Artist for Arts Integration Menomonie.