Saturday, September 1, 2012

2nd Grade: First "Real" Lesson

Wednesday was the start of my second rotation and my first set of "real" lessons for the year.  Although I did incorporate music into my first rotation (especially with K-2), much of those first lessons was reserved for rules, info. about performing groups, recorder letters, etc.  So needless to say, it was refreshing to be able to focus on just making music!

My 2nd grade lesson for this rotation is one I'm particularly proud of.  Each activity was borrowed or inspired by a colleague but they way they came together was awesome.  It's not often that I don't feel the need to tweak after the first day.

Here's what we did:

1.  Hello Song
I do an echoing song that I got from my supervising teacher during my internship.  I start out the year leading the song and once students are comfortable, I invite a duet up to lead the song and the rest of the class echoes them.

2.  Instrument Families
Introduction to instrument families.  I plan to focus on one instrument family per quarter.  I started with WW's but I wish I hadn't.  It wasn't my original plan but because of the scheduling of some special events, my students really would benefit from being familiar with WW's now.  In this lesson we just discussed how they are played, what they are made of and special features (reeds, keys).

3.  Rhythm Building Blocks
I know that technically these are supposed to be called bricks but I always default to blocks, so that's what I'm using with my kids.

This was a great way to ease back into rhythm.  I came up with back to school inspired words for each of the rhythm building blocks.  Since my blocks are laminated, I wrote the words under the rhythms with a dry erase marker.  This is the first time I'm using the blocks with my students, so I picked the words this time.  Next month, I will let the kids brainstorm words that fit each of the rhythm blocks.

We clapped the rhythm of the words of each card as I stuck them to the white board.  Once we had clapped each card, I called students up one at a time to pull out a card to create their own 8 beat rhythm pattern.

4.  The Cougars Are Coming
This was a short back to school poem that a colleague, Mr. G, shared with me.  We echoed to learn the poem and then used the rhythm we had composed with the blocks as a B section.

We performed this in AB form:
A - poem spoken
B - Drums play building block rhythm

We sat in rows and the kid at the front of the row played the drum.  During the repeat of the A section they would move to the end so that the next student would be ready to play B.

5.  School Bus Rhythms
To assess what my students had retained over the summer I used Mrs. King's School Bus Rhythm idea.  This was such a great way to see how they were doing with aurally distinguishing rhythm patterns.  You never know what they are going to retain over the summer and it was nice to see where they were and who was struggling.

See Mrs. King's School Bus Rhythms

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