One of the biggest successes I’ve had this year is with my kindergarten kids as we listen for high and low AND try and identify AB patterns in music. We use Elgar’s “Faeries and Giants” from his Wand of Youth Suites. This lesson piggybacks off of a resource that I have in my Spotlight on Music Series, Kindergarten level. My district ONLY has the Kindergarten resources from Spotlight, and we have Making Music by Silver Burdett for everything else. Anyway with or without the Spotlight materials, you can make this lesson work. Visuals aren’t hard to make and when I couldn’t find my Spotlight CDs to get the audio recording for the song, in a pinch I found the piece on Spotify. Easy!
The Lesson and identifying form
Then we listen. I keep the kids following along with my actions as we sit criss-cross and listen. They crack up when we get to the coda and I quickly switch from faerie to giant and they try and keep up. Then when the song is done I say, “ You know what, I think I heard a pattern in that music!” And I show them on the big book that we had faeries and then giants, faeries and then giants. “Do they know what kind of pattern that is…” sure enough they do. When they look at the picture it makes clear what they’ve heard is an AB pattern. Then I pull the circles and triangles that I’ve made over top of the big book. I have them identify the different parts as “A” and “B” and I turn my circles and triangles around to identify the parts. We talk about that a little bit and if we have the extra 3 minutes we listen again.
Then I pull out my scarves. When they hear the faeries they get to stand up and dance around the room and keep their scarves up high in the air and pretend they’re faeries flying through the sky. Then when they hear the giants, “Take your scarf and crumple it up in your fist, put on your angry face, and stomp around to the steady beat.” They love this! You follow the AB pattern of the song as you prance and then stomp. They especially love the coda so they can stomp and use their scarves. It’s a hoot to watch.
But you get to identify AB, hear and identify high and low, move, reinforce steady beat, work with contrasting ideas, make connections between sound and feelings, reinforce literacy concepts… basically it’s a home run lesson because it covers so much AND it’s a ton of fun.
Check it out! --------------------->