Sunday, 19 February 2017

February News


Ah, lend me your ear for some really great news,
Hark! It’s a beautiful thing!
February, the dreariest month of the year…
Is the shortest and nearest to spring!

Kindergarten News

  •  We finished up our farm unit and had fun reviewing each animal by playing a game such as: Duck, Duck Goose, My Pony Macaroni, The Cows are Lost and the Chicken Dance.
  • For our Valentine's theme unit, we focused on circle games and partner songs such as: I Like You, Roses Red and Tony Chestnut.
  • After the long weekend, we will look at songs emphasizing colors, days of the week, ABCs and numbers. 

Grade One News

  • For February 14th, we enjoyed adding instrumental sound effects to a poem entitled, "My Valentine". Students learned to say and play their special word as the poem was recited. 
  • They also learned to play high and low sounds on the glockenspiel to the song "Valentine, Valentine, turn around".
  • We are currently working on identifying and comparing sounds (musical and non-musical) such as high-low, up-down, loud-quiet, fast-slow and short-long. These concepts are being taught using instruments, movement and listening to music from Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint-Saens. To date we have studied the following pieces and I have provided links for you to view them again at home:
  1. The Elephant          https://youtu.be/ug8hCAyBaqg
  2. The Aviary             https://youtu.be/gOuHfhXz-eE
The Grade one students are also very fond of the song Elephants Have Wrinkles (and apparently so does Mrs. Martin- ha!)  https://youtu.be/cRvMB9zJvsg

Grade Two News

  • The month started off very well with our dress rehearsal and winter concert, The Big Chill, performed on February 2nd.  The grade 2 students did a wonderful job portraying themselves in their mini-musical. After the concert, the students were asked to do a review and I have attached a sample writing activity (see above).
  • For Valentine's Day, we enjoyed creating a sound poem with instruments which was narrated and acted out by Gr. 2 students. We also made a Friendship Tunnel and moved through the tunnel while listening to music. Lots of laughs!
  • This month we have been studying dynamics by adding expression to poems and songs about Polar Bears and Grizzly Bears. We will also listen to "The Surprise Symphony" by Franz Joseph Haydn and discuss how dynamics can add excitement and, "surprise" in music.
  • Students have also been learning how to locate pitches on a 5-line staff. We are still using just so-mi and la hand-signs but will extend it to doh in the spring.

Grade Three News

  • The month started off very well with our dress rehearsal and winter concert, The Big Chill, performed on February 2nd.  The grade 3 students did an amazing job of portraying the teachers in their mini-musical. After the concert, the students were asked to do a review and I have attached a sample writing activity (see above).
  • A fun Valentine song we did was "Love with Keep us Together" by Captain and Tenille from 1975. The students enjoyed adding movement and singing to the chorus. The students probably did not know that they were learning about Rondo form with this song in which the A section kept coming back. 
  • Along with developing performance skills for a large audience, students are once again doing a group project titled, "Rhythm and Beat"and presenting it to their classmates. Our focus was differentiating between rhythm and beat while studying simple songs and rhymes. I was looking for cooperation among group members, using time wisely, accurate body percussion and eye contact with their audience. 
  • Try asking your child if they can demonstrate rhythm and/or beat with body percussion (i.e. snap, pat, clap) with a well-known nursery rhyme or simple song that they know well.
  • Both "Love will Keep up Together" and Rhythm or Beat are examples of rondo form where we create different sections through movement and by using different poems/songs.

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