Professional Development: Day 3 & 4


Day 3

On day 3 we explored an area of Art I am not at all comfortable with. I’ve always wanted to act, ever since I was young. I was painfully shy and auditioned many times for many parts. I never made it in a play, even as an extra.

In college, I learned the dances to The Music Man. I auditioned and bombed. Bad. Bad enough that there was comments, sniggering, etc.

I tember waking J up in her dorm room and bawling. I knew I wasn’t great but I had hoped to be in the chorus….

That was my last play audition. Ever since, I have this reoccurring nightmare of me having the part in a play or wanting a part and I get up there and bomb it.

So you know, I was totally ready for Drama day. We warmed up through dance and our first assignment was to act out a scene without talking during the scene and only verbal communication to practice. We received walking across a log over a revine of alligators. The alligator part we did not get across very well….

As the activities wore on, again and again, we acted out silently. For the one we acted out with words, Shel Silverstein poems, we’re so fun, if anyone noticed a mistake, it really didn’t matter.

I also attended a writing using music session where the music could represent a character, or the setting, or a great many other elements. I think I could use this in my room but, I might change some of the components.

Finally, we took the time to talk about A+ and lesson plans. I’ve been doing them wrong. Hear me out.

I know what Band kids need to know to learn to play their instruments. 50 years Anericans have been basically teaching it the same. I was taught in that way too. When I started on my own integrating concepts, I already had something in mind, a completely thought out idea with an activity wedged in for connection sake. Or I found a cooooool activity I wanted to try, now how would I build a lesson around it?

Wrong, wrong, mcwronggy wrong wrong! Sounds so simple… But you take your standard and you say what do they need to know? How can I teach it and then your bag of tricks opens up and idea pop out.

Like teaching the scientific method in music. Give them an instrument to put together but no directions. Go over the scientific method and using that, have them assemble instruments. While that’s going on, slip one group the instructions (our control group) then discuss successes and failures. Even have the kids write new instructions for someone else to follow and see if it works.

Usually I make them stare at me while I slowly assemble instruments.

This sounds better. Sounds more interesting!

Day 4

Day 4 was music day. I told myself not to go in there being the Queen Bee or Mrs.Knowitall. I remained silent a lot and learned how to incorporate dance and scarves into an elements of music activity. We also watched Papaoutai which our Swedish observers told us was a huge it in Europe. We watched it without sound and had to theorize what was going on with the characters:

Then the group’s explained what they thought. Once the sound was turned on we talked about the musical elements from the video.

Because I’ve seen the video before, I again kept quiet. There were some crazy and very cool interpretations of what this video could be. Once everyone was told the title and it was translated, it made more sense to people. I googled it months ago because it really was an interesting video and I wanted to know what the lyrics meant!

Then… The lesson that blew my mind to bits…. I could do math. Other than my “oh we count and divide beats per minute. That’s enough math.” Except not.

I loved the lesson so much that…

That is such an obscene amount of duct tape, washi tape, and electrical tape that… I’m really hoping Lowes will donate the PVC pipes… $1.78 for 10ft and we need about…20 pipes to snag everyone I want to snag this year… And I want them to cut it for free… Maybe?

We also shared a lot. We decided there is a no gossip rule at school. Since nobody came to gossip with me in the .5 seconds I had between classes, (last year) I feel like I can keep up with this rule.

During all this, we were to post our talents on a talent board. I mentioned a couple of things I feel like I do well. Even though I  not 1,000 followers strong, or even 150, I feel like I blog well. It’s not perfect but I can set one up at the very least!

The new art teacher approached me and told me I needed to start a music lesson planning blog.y first reaction was she was crazy, AoS takes up enough of my thoughts and time now; you want me to have two?!

As I thought though, I realized, a blog with resources for all teachers teaching music and integrated lessons (math and music, science and music, English and music, you savvy?) wouldn’t be updated daily. Not if I’m posting tried, tested lessons. So I created We All Teach Music a wordpress blog and posted my first lesson I was excited about, the rhythm sticks. I gave the originator credit, and I will always do that. Teachers steal from one another great ideas but when it comes to actual lessons that truly are masterful, you have to credit. You have to credit if for no other reason than no one could believe you came up with that! 

If you have time to stop by and peak at We All Teach Music or my favorite lesson Ratios and Rhythms, I think you are awesome! Thank you!

After that wonderful sharing though, we packed up and headed to our rooms to sleep for day 5…


4 thoughts on “Professional Development: Day 3 & 4

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