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Music News

    Ms. Sharon Pearson         spearson@csd.sau7.org                
2019-2020   At Pittsburg School  Tuesdays, Wednesdays, & Thursdays 

K-4 General Music: 
The Magic of Fairy Tales & Nursery Rhymes

Did you know...?  That all of the essential elements and foundations of music can be found in the rhythms, phrases, movements, and storytelling of the most beloved, traditional nursery rhymes and playground singing games.   

In Kindergarten & Grade 1, we're especially focusing on the concepts of:   loud/quiet,   fast/slow,   high/low,   big/small,   and happy/sad.    We're also putting together 5 of our most important childhood songs into a really special medley that shares a surprising new part of the story.

Grade 2 is taking these further,  adding new playing skills, steps, and what some of the rhythms look like as symbols.  Translating them between everyday words and names, and even playing them on xylophones and classroom instruments, is a fun new challenge.   Soon we'll be adding the "real" music words for those opposites, too.  Learning to manage right & left movements with keeping a steady beat is trickier than we expect to learn; but pay off with new sequences & singing-games!   (Not to mention, when we're dancing our way through Duloc!)

Grade 3 & 4  are preparing for reading "real" music on the treble staff; and have graduated to recognizing note shapes and values plus how they move up & down on those lines.   Adding the solfa hand shapes for do, re, mi and other pitches help in matching & predicting how much to move voices and notes played.   Holiday songs could be extra-exciting to play! 

Grades 5 & 6  have been refreshing reading rhythms, and learning a bit about the connections between what they see, hear, play, and how.  Naming notes with the music alphabet is a lot like following marks on a graph.  

This class is especially inquisitive about "Shrek" and their roles.  Music Theatre is the main focus this semester -- especially the question of HOW  does a story get turned into a musical production?  What goes on behind the scenes?   This group will be right there as a junior stage crew & cast members, helping & learning hands-on to see the answer develop.  

Grades 5-8: 
The Super Heroes of Music, and the Super Powers (aka the Elements of Music)

The Elements are their super powers... and it's how they use, manipulate, arrange, and engage them that help tell stories, suggest characters, places, and emotions, and even prompt physical responses like excitement, worry, and toe-tapping!    

Students are learning more about these aspects they've been responding to all their lives:  Melody & Harmony; Form, Dynamics, Rhythm, Tone, Texture, & Timbre.  "Expression" is especially important, bringing these together to prompt the audience's feelings and understandings of the music.  

How can a composer have super powers over you?       What super powers does music have?    
How does music or learning about it have any impact on our every day lives? 

Just imagine life without different ring tones.  Or watching a movie without theme music for the story or characters... or if a bunch of movie tracks got all shuffled!   How would we know that Jaws or Darth Vader are lurking... or that Indiana Jones, ET, Harry Potter, and Jurassic dinosaurs are all where they should be? 

Composer of the Month:  John Williams, Superstar Composer, Pianist, and Air Force Veteran

* * *

Meet the Composer!
What IS a "Composer" and What DO they do?   What are their super powers?

This ongoing series of lessons for grades 3-8 introduces students to some of the most famous people and pieces in past and present music culture.  

(And nope, we're not talking about a bunch of long-dead boring guys... Not even close!) 

News from the Swamp
"SHREK" The Musical, 
TYA Version (Theatre for Young Audiences)

REHEARSALS for leads begin TUESDAY, Oct. 22

ALL CAST: stay tuned for specific after school schedules, based on parts & sports.  Unless excused:
Plan on 2:45-4:30 most days
with Mr. DeWitt for staging & lines, 
& with Ms. Pearson for  music & choreography.

All Grade K-6 students will become involved in November; mostly during music class.  More info (incl. for costumes & needed parent help) will be posted & shared later.  

Save the Dates!
Annual Musical
 Saturday, Dec. 7, 6:30 pm
Sunday, Dec. 8, 3:00 pm

Concert, Carols & Cookies
Wednesday, Dec. 11 
6:30 pm
*Stay tuned for new details*