Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ram Sam Sam and Little Johnny Brown

I feel like I am always writing that a particular day's lessons are among my favorites, but on Monday it was really true. We began in second grade with the kids learning "A Ram Sam Sam," a children's tune from Morocco. This song and the activity that accompanies it using chops sticks and paper give the kids an opportunity to deepen their understanding of the relationship between beat and rhythm. It also gives them a chance to work on their music sight reading skills, an ability that is very useful and often neglected.

By contrast the 3rd grade lesson centered on the song/game "Little Johnny Brown" was all about playing by ear and feel. The kids leaned an additional note - "E" - bringing their recorder vocabulary to 4 notes. As we will experiment with more next week, this is plenty to create some very jazzy improvisations. Those of you who want to get started on this, check out the video above and you'll see what I mean.

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