Mrs. Niu - Mrs. Rzasa -
For all information regarding the Memorial String Orchestra Program, please click HERE.  

Friday, February 13, 2015

Weekly Review 2/9 - 2/13

This week, the first grade students celebrated some February holidays!  First, they learned all about Punxatawny Phil, the groundhog who looks for his shadow every February 2nd.   Then, we sang a fun Groundhog's Day song.  One child was selected to be the groundhog, sleeping in the center of the circle.  Following the beat of the song, the other students walked around the groundhog while singing.  At the end of the song the sleeping groundhog woke up, and named the first person that he or she saw. That new friend became the next groundhog! 

In honor of Valentine's Day, they sang "Heel, Toe, on the Line."  There were two words that the students did not recognize- "Ja" and "Nein." These words mean "Yes" and "No" in German. Each student dances with a partner in a circle and on the word "Nein," the partners turns their back against each other and ends up with a new partner. It was so much fun to see who are new partner was going to be!  

The second graders continued their fun instrument family activity: the Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra interactive game!  They learned all about the instruments in the string and brass family, and how their sound is produced.  After February vacation, they will finish the game with the percussion family! 

This was a HUGE week for the third graders....they all took their notation test, then finally received their recorders!  If your child is in third grade, here are a few important things to keep in mind:

  • The students need to bring their recorders to class for each music day.  
  • Mrs. Niu and I will be taking "recorder attendance," and three or more unprepared days will result in a call home.  The students will learn best when they have their instrument in school!
  • Recorders are only allowed to be played in music and outside of school.  Please remind your child not to play on the bus or in their regular classroom.
  • To help students succeed, home practice is necessary.  Please have your child aim for 5 minutes each day.  Of course, more is always good too!  Since the recorders are new, they will likely practice a lot- but this may fade in the coming weeks.  Ask your child to play for you to help encourage them!
  • To clean the recorders, you may wash them with warm soapy water, or place them in the TOP RACK of the dishwasher. 
  • Thank you- we appreciate your patience and support as your child learns a new instrument!
The fourth and fifth graders enjoyed practicing their compositions on the classroom percussion instruments.  Each group thoughtfully selected the instruments they thought would sound best with the rhythm they composed.  After vacation, we will be performing them for class and recording the songs.  

In chorus, the students continued to work on "Land That We Love and "It Don't Mean a Thing."  They all started to learn their grade level featured songs too:  "Sourwood Mountain" for 4th grade, and "Johnny B. Goode" for 5th.  Don't forget- the lyrics and a few videos/recordings can be found on our Chorus page!

We hope that you have a wonderful and safe February break!  We'll leave you with a few pictures and a video from our impromptu Patriots pep rally:)

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