And through these new beginnings, to make music a part of learning everything
For children, music makes academic learning matter more because its fun, it evokes feelings, and best of all, music makes learning LAST.
What is Guitars in the Classroom? a.k.a. GITC (git-see) GITC is a non-profit organization. We provide music integration training for pre-school through middle school classroom teachers and learning specialists by empowering local music teachers to take the lead! Our approach provides a new way to bring guitar education to general and pk-8 Music Classrooms.
This program model empowers & pays 1 qualified music instructor to train up to 24 classroom teachers per group to integrate songs for teaching across the academic curricula. Many of our instructors are elementary school music educators who play basic acoustic guitar. We Utilize a Train the Trainer Model
When you help teachers with unexplored music inside them experience their creative potential for the 1st time, you will transform their lives, their teaching, and the lives of all children they will teach now and into the future.
By including the classroom teachers in making music, you will build a hunger for more music instruction in your school!
How GITC Makes Guitar Accessible We designed a developmental approach in Open G or Slack Key tuning because it helps beginners develop hand coordination, strength, and musicality in achievable steps. that lead to later success in standard tuning.
GITC Chords vs. Chords in Standard Tuning GITC chords are intended to create guitar readiness. Ours is a developmental method. Some contain notes not found in these chords in their standard forms. We permit this because it builds fine motor skills in the fingering hand while allowing participants to experience playing fluidly and singing without having to stop for chord changes. The emphasis on making music leads to understanding. Beginners fall in love with playing right away and are motivated to share their musical adventure with the kids in their classes. The approach builds musical self confidence and joy without finger pain! Feeling this kind of passion, hope and drive, beginners pursue learning to make music, eventually developing higher level skills and abilities. It gets better because GITC provides a good beginning.
Classroom teachers may choose to lead singing only, or to integrate hands-on guitar with their song-based instruction By rotating students through a guitar station. How do teachers utilize their GITC training?
How Song-Based Instruction Facilitates Student Success Boosts Student Engagement & Focus Improves Listening Skills Provides Daily Oral Language Participation Promotes Memorization Improves Auditory Sequential Memory Song Forms foster Parts to Whole Thinking Song Forms foster Whole to Parts Thinking Activates Kinesthetic Learning Promotes Phonemic Awareness Builds Vocabulary Increases Language Fluency Improves Reading Comprehension Deepens Student Connection to Content
Music educators either choose to integrate guitar in a small sections that fit with other instrumentation such as Orff, or by dedicating time for guitar lessons for everyone.
What would you do if integrating group guitar in your music class were easy?
I am a music specialist of 31 years. I had always wanted to use guitars in my classroom music instruction but did not know where to begin or what curriculum to use. Soon after, I was introduced to the GITC program. Several of our classroom teachers had been enjoying weekly lessons and I joined in. The best part about Guitars in the Classroom for me as a music specialist was that I could use the exact same teaching strategies and materials with my students as the classroom teachers were learning in their GITC music integration lessons… a delightful double dip. Learning how to play guitars has become the highlight of my students learning for 3 years running. I recommend GITC to any district, classroom instructor, or music specialist like myself. Dixie Jacobsen, Music Teacher, Cardiff Schools, CA Music educators speak about GITC
What if teaching GITC meant the faculty at your school felt musically able and eager to participate in musical activities with you? How might that change your teaching experience? How might it affect your students? Your administration? Your community?
GITC works with artists in many capacities who wish to promote the inclusion of music in academic learning! George Winston has helped GITC raise funds for GITC programs in Louisiana and will play for us again in 2010-2011. Jack Johnsons new foundation is funding the development of our Green Songbook workshops for teaching eco-sustainability through song!
Theres a Hole in the Bucket Open G 1. Theres a hole in the bucket Dear Liza, Dear Liza, Theres a hole in the bucket Dear Liza, a hole! Open G 2. Then fix it, Dear Henry, Dear Henry, Dear Henry Then fix it, Dear Henry, Dear Henry, fix it! GETTING STARTED In the beginning, we teach familiar songs without any chord changes, such as this one. Singing and playing feel natural. We introduce Body Percussion before Strumming. We work with feeling and playing the steady beat
The first note beginners learn is a C. Play it by placing your pointer (P) on second string in the 1 st fret.
In the first 2 weeks, we play familiar songs with just Open G and the C Note, and we point out auditory cues for chord changes such as key words or rhymes. This builds musical success. Doing leads to smiles & understanding. Name songs can help kids establish a sense of belonging in the classroom. Get On Board (traditional) Capo position: 5 th fret First Singing Note: 3 rd string open Open G Ive got a friend that we all know and Lucy is her name! Open G Ive got a friend that we all know and Lucy is her name! C Note Get on board, Children, Children, Open G Get on board, Children, Children, C Note Get on board, Children, Children, Open G C Note Open G Theres room for many- a- more !
The first chord form beginners learn is a D7 that we call Easy D because it is easier to play than D or D7 in standard tuning, and the fingering is similar to D7 in standard tuning. It will help students make a transition from Open G to Standard Tuning later.
In GITCs AMIGO program, funded primarily by the NAMM Foundation, teachers learn to lead songs in Spanish and English to help their ELLs acquire English proficiency: Buenos dias the tune of Are You Sleeping traditional Capo Position: none First Singing Note: 3 rd string (G) open Open G Buenos dias, buenos dias Open G ¿ Como es-tas ? ¿ Como es-tas ? Open G Muy bien gracias, muy bien gracias, Easy D Open G ¿Y us- ted? ¿ Y us- ted? We work with feeling and playing the divided beat
After singing the verse in Spanish, teachers lead the verse in English so children develop comprehension and language proficiency! Open G Good morning ! Good morning! How are you? How are you? Very well, thank you. Easy D Open G Easy D Open G How about you? How about you? The repetition in song forms like this one reinforces learning beautifully!
EASY C and C MAJOR The 3rd chord beginners learn is what we call Easy C. Its easy because there is no painful hand stretch involved. This transitional chord is actually a Csus (suspended), that level of music theory is not useful to absolute beginners who want to make music now, think later. When beginners can play Easy C competently, they add their 3 rd finger to the 1 st string, strum from the fourth string downward, and the chord becomes a C major. This form of the C major chord also does not contain a stretch- but it allows the beginner to develop a callus on their ring finger and here all three notes in a C major. This chord prepares them to be able to handle playing a C chord in standard tuning later.
Open G Esta es mi mamá Open G Este es mi papá Easy D Este es mi hermano alto Open G Esta es mi hermana Open G Este es el bebé Easy C Easy D Open G Y nos que-remos to-dos Open G This is my mother Open G This is my father Easy D This is my big, tall brother Open G This is my sister Open G This is the baby Easy C Easy D Open G And we care for each o-ther! La familia (The Family) traditional Capo position:5 th fret First Singing Note: 3 rd string open From the AMIGO Project
Open G Chorus: My roots go down- Down to the earth Easy C My roots go down Open G Down to the earth Open G My roots go down Open G Down to the earth Easy D Open G My roots go down! Open G 1.I am a redwood on a mountainside Easy C Open G I am a redwood on a mountain-side Open G I am a redwood on a mountainside Easy D Open G My roots go down! Open G 2. I am a sunflower feeding the birds Easy C Open G I am a sunflower feeding the birds Open G I am a sunflower feeding the birds Easy D Open G My roots go down! 3.I am a rose on a thorny bush 4.I am a flowering plumeria tree 5. I am bamboo stalks tall and thin My Roots Go Down by Sarah Pirtle Capo: 5 th fret First Singing note: 4 th string open From The Green Songbook (from Alfred publishing, fall 2010)
In Six Weeks Beginners can: Strum the even and uneven beats in both directions. Sing songs-without halting- while changing between three or four chords. Make up new lyrics to fit a familiar melody. Lead students with call and response singing. Integrate songs into lesson plans. Begin to tune their own instruments
Imagine Your Teaching with GITC If your students had these skills, what would that allow you to do in your music classes? If the teachers in your area had these skills, how might that allow you to interact with faculty members and administrators at your school…. and out in your community?
Instruments and supplies are generously provided by NAMM member sponsors! Some funding comes to GITC from foundations such as The NAMM Foundation, The DAddario Music Foundation, The Bill Graham Foundation, The Aria Foundation & The Music for Life Alliance! Schools often contribute through their professional development budgets or PTOs. Businesses help out. For example, Bookmans Books supports Training in Phoenix, AZ because GITC Boosts literacy. Who Makes GITC Possible? Organizations such as GAMA and the California Arts Council fund special GITC projects!
Guitars in the Classroom is immensely grateful to these sponsors and many more! For a full list, please visit our website at www.guitarsintheclassroom.org!
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