Thanks to Steph at "Stay Tuned" for making this linky party happen!
Check out the other linked up blogs when you visit this post about the 2/4 Tuesday party!
#1 Make a check off sheet for things that you need to do.
I’ve attached my list here for download (if you want) to see what I do to prepare for a concert. All of my concerts are off site at the closest high school (our school doesn’t have a space large enough to host a concert of any size) so my list might be different from yours, but the ideas are the same.
#2 Work with music that you like
Invest in music you like. Invest in music that’s clever. Invest in something that teaches concepts while you learn. Last year I did the John Jacobson “Bear-y Merry Holiday” and I loved it because it was cute music that included a partner song, some harmony, word play, good actions, and a variety of musical styles all at a level that could be taught to second and third grade. Those are the best kind of programs.
Can’t find a good one? Make your own! I just did and it was truly not that hard. I took a bunch of songs that I liked, pulled them together, wrote dialog in-between, put on a central theme, and bam! New program. My most recent program was a thinly veiled citizenship program dressed up in the guise of a space invasion. There’s only one song about space, but when your dialog in-between involves aliens and kids talking, they get the idea. See below for what I pulled together. As you can see, many of the songs are old MusicK8 songs from various volumes.
Is There Life on Mars? – Music K8: Vol. 10, No. 5
Frances Willard School Song
High Five Hand Jive -- From the musical "Let's Pass It On" by Michael and Jill Gallina
Gratitude Attitude -- Music K8: Vol. 11, No. 5
The Things we Share -- Music K8: Vol. 11, No. 5
Pass It On -- Also from the musical "Let's Pass It On" by Michael and Jill Gallina
#3 Have a way to communicate DURING the program.
The hard thing is that you’re working with very little humans and they get EASILY distracted. They’re wearing their very nice clothes and they’re in a weird place on risers and they’re singing their fun songs and their parents are there! Ya-hoo! So much to get distracted by… Have a way to pull them back in.
I made these signs last year that have been a great help. They’re the basics. Watch me! Smile! I can’t hear you, sing louder! Quiet! I went to Dollar Tree and found the basic classroom signs and then made a couple of my own (the ear and smile) to modify for what I needed at the concert.
#4 How long do I hold this pose?
I stole this idea from my great mentor teacher, Debbie Gray. She said to her students, “You can move when the last person stops clapping.” That means that they have to be quiet, listen, pay attention, and all decide together when the last person in the room stops clapping. This actually works really well for me. For the week or two before the concert we really practice and I clap in class and make them stop and listen before they move. It’s pretty fun and gives them the responsibility. This also frees me up to look at my script, fiddle with the speakers, make sure I have what I need for the next segment, or move from the piano to my spot.