First. we want to congratulate the third graders for doing such an amazing job at Tuesday's concert! The 3rd grade violinists wowed us with their string skills, then all of the students performed on recorder. Everyone's favorite songs were Rollin' to Balboa, When the Saints Go Marching In, and Rock Boom BAG!
All of the students in grades 1-5 played on the Orff instruments this week. The Orff instruments include the xylophone, matallophone, and glockenspiel. We started by reviewing the names and sizes/ranges (soprano, alto, and bass), then worked on mallet technique.
The first graders were playing many of these instruments for the first time, so there was a lot to learn. We compared the sizes of the bars, and discussed how the size affects the pitch of each. The students echoed different patterns, and practiced alternating mallets. They can't wait to play the Orff instruments a bit more in second grade!
The second graders played some simple tunes on the instruments, including Hot Cross Buns. Once they were familiar with the melody, they learned a simple bass line to play with it! We switched between the tonic and dominant (I and V), and the students were able to work out when it was time to change.
The third graders also learned bass lines for songs like Hot Cross Buns and Merrily We Roll Along. Then, we split the class into two groups and one group played the tunes on the recorders, while the other group played the accompaniment on the Orff instruments.
The fourth and fifth graders were a little more advanced on the instruments. They first figured out the pitches in the I chord and the V chord. Then, we alternated between the two chords to accompany a few different songs. Students who were not playing sang, and then we switched. The students even had a chance to improvise on each of the chords. As long as they were playing the notes which are in each chord (and changing when necessary), they could vary the accompaniment as they pleased!
Don't forget, we are having our annual Musical Showcase this coming week (with the exception of Thursday due to field day). We can't wait to see all of the performances! :)