Thursday, September 25, 2014

Learning about Long and Short

First grade students are finishing up a unit on musical opposites. The last two opposite words they have been learning about are long and short. They discovered that long and short sounds can be made into patterns that create rhythms! Here are a few of the ways they experienced long and short sounds:

Students put these pictures into the correct category according to the kind of sound it made:

They really enjoyed using scarves to help show long and short. They pretended their scarf was a paintbrush and they painted long or short strokes as they listened to the "Long and Short Dance" (from the Share the Music curriculum).

Students used rhythm sticks to show long and short as well. As they listened to music, they used their rhythm sticks like drum sticks on the floor if they heard short sounds...

And pretended to play violins if the sounds were long...

Then, we read the book, Otto Goes to the Beach, by Todd Parr:

 In the story, Otto is having a really rough day and they hear the repeated phrase, "Poor, Otto!" 

The students quickly discovered that the word "Otto" has two short sounds and "Poor" has a long sound!

With our own dog pictures, we created patterns on the board with long and short sounds such as "Poor, Poor, Otto, Poor."

Then, they worked with a partner to create and perform their own patterns.

Finally, the students were introduced to the real musical symbols: the quarter note (long sound) and eighth notes (short sounds). They were able to make patterns with the newly learned symbols, otherwise known as "tah" and "ti-ti."

Next up... rests! Stay tuned for more rhythm work in 1st grade music! :)

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