What does my child need to wear to music class?
All children should dress in comfortable clothes and shoes – we do a lot of movement!
How are the children assessed in music class?
Students from 1st through 5th grade will receive a music grade after the 2nd and 4th quarter.
The current marking system is:
√ Appropriate Progress
- Needs Improvement
They are graded in two general areas:
Skills – Vocal Development, Rhythmic Development and Movement Development.
Participation/Behavior – students are graded each semester in this area.
How can I contact Miss Arnold?
Although e-mail is the most efficient form of communication for me, I welcome whatever works best for you! Please feel free to call me at school, send a note or e-mail.
How do you teach the kids?
We use a blend of methodologies/approaches with the children.
Kodaly Method: solfege (do, re, mi…) with hand signs/sight singing/prepare a concept, present it and practice it.
Gordon Method: consistent rhythmic syllables, tonal and meter awareness, root melodies (or bass lines)
Dalcroze Eurythmics: understanding music through movement
Orff-Schulwerk: That’s a biggie! See below!
What is Orff-Schulwerk?
It is an approach to teaching music to children developed by composer Carl Orff and his co-worker Gunild Keetman. Orff’s intent was for music making to be accessible and captivating to children.
Below are the elements of Orff-Schulwerk (or “schoolwork”)
Movement is an enormous chunk of the Orff approach. He did not view it as separate from the music, but completely integral. Students will develop a movement vocabulary of locomotor and non-locomotor movements. They will explore moving alone, with partners, and as a group. We also learn folk dances from around the world.
Speech: The natural rhythm of our “mother tongue” is an impetus for rhythm. A simple phrase, proverb or quote can be turned into a rhythmic or melodic piece by the children. Simple speech patterns can also be transferred easily to an instrument.
Singing: The voice is the child’s primary instrument and their most immediate form of expression!
Our “instrumentarium” is made up of:
Orff modified barred instruments like the xylophone, metallophone, and glockenspiel so that the instruments could be more easily played by children. He also made the bars removable.
Recorders are another pitched instrument used in Orff-Schulwerk and, being in the woodwind family, provide a great contrast to the percussion.
Unpitched instruments: These include woods, metals, skins (many drum varieties), scrapers and shakers.
Improvisation: In an Orff classroom, there are teacher-directed activities, but there is also a great deal of exploratory time in which children are problem solvers in small groups or alone. They are given small tasks in one of the elemental areas. They work on the problem-develop solutions- share it with others and refine their work.
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