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Technical Competency 10 -- Differentiating Instruction, Presentations, or Experiences with Digital Media Content: PowerPoint presentation, including audio.

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Presentation on theme: "Technical Competency 10 -- Differentiating Instruction, Presentations, or Experiences with Digital Media Content: PowerPoint presentation, including audio."— Presentation transcript:


2 Technical Competency 10 -- Differentiating Instruction, Presentations, or Experiences with Digital Media Content: PowerPoint presentation, including audio file, images, and text Lesson plan, including Context, Aim, Lesson Content, Materials, Lesson Sequence, and Differentiation Summary

3 This lesson plan incorporates both music and images to present to students an example of jazz expression, to give more context and insight into a work of literature.

4 “Blues for Alice”

5 Charlie “Bird” Parker (1920-1955) Influential alto saxophonist, one of the originators of Bebop, a jazz style that rejected much of traditional jazz improvisation.

6 Melody—A sequence of tones, usually in the same key, that produces a rhythmic whole; the tune Harmony—A combination of two or more tones working together in a pleasing, orderly whole; the accompaniment Rhythm—A regular recurrence of accented tones and stresses; the beat Verse—The main part of the song that usually introduces and carries the melody Chorus—The part of the song that repeats Solo—A section of the song where the main instrumentalist plays alone, improvising or ad-libbing

7 LESSON PLAN FOR FENCES CONTEXT The goal of this lesson plan is to increase students’ familiarity with and knowledge of the nuances of the unit plan’s essential questions and enduring understandings. In this lesson, I hope to help support students’ understanding of how jazz influenced the dialogue in August Wilson’s play, Fences, by exploring a few musical analysis terms and applying them two specific moments from the first act of the play. This unit plan will be given to 11th-grade students at Brooklyn Collegiate high school in Brooklyn, New York. The class consists of about 27 multicultural students, predominantly African American and Muslims. The essential questions I have designed for the unit are: How can we honor our parents’ legacy while recognizing we do not want to repeat their mistakes? How does the legacy of racism affect family relationships? What is “African American theater?” Is there such a thing as an “African American play?” My enduring understandings are: It takes great courage to change directions in the face of familial and racial legacies. You can’t outrun death, but you don’t have to let the idea of death haunt your life.

8 AIM This lesson plan is to be given to students early on in the unit, just the fourth class in the first week of a four week unit. It attempts to offer some foundational knowledge that may help students as they begin to read the play, as well as an important technique they can use throughout their literary journeys. This lesson focuses on applying external concepts, in this case musical idioms brought to life through jazz, to a literary text, and seeing how that application adds richness to our comprehension. It uses jazz music as the lens through which we can view this particular text. This is an invaluable technique for literary understanding, and has incredibly flexible and far-reaching applications. In other units, I can image students learning how to apply a Marxist or a Feminist lens to a text. The lens might change but the technique, learned here, remains the same. LESSON CONTENT AND SKILL GOALS The goals of this specific lesson are to help students know how dialogue (one of a playwright’s main tools, along with conflict and setting) creates characters, and in the context of this play, identify ways in which jazz music influenced Wilson’s dialogue. During the lesson, students will listen to a jazz tune and begin to define what they hear. They will view a PowerPoint presentation introducing and explaining musical analytical terms. They will speak selected speeches and lines of dialogue from the play and reapply these musical terms to the speeches. They will analyze this piece of writing, and decode or translate it by applying these musical analytical terms to the dialogue. The students will then see how, if at all, musical ideas can help describe or illuminate literary ideas, how music potentially shapes Wilson’s dialogue in this play, and how jazz builds fictional characters. The student will write down what they think in a worksheet exercise during the later part of the class.

9 MATERIALS The lesson will use music, images, and text, supported by a presentation and a worksheet, to support the content and skill goals. The music will be a recording of a 1951 composition by Charlie Parker called “Blues for Alice,” notable for its sweet melody and harmonic complexity. The music will be accompanied by an image of Parker, plus content offering a bio and short definitions of various musical terms the students can use to both understand the tune and the musicality of the dialogue in August Wilson’s play.

10 LESSON SEQUENCE--1 ANTICIPATORY SET Do Now (5 mins) Students will listen to “Blues for Alice,” a jazz tune featuring saxophonist Charlie Parker, and try to put into words what Parker is putting into music. The students will be asked to write one sentence answers to these three questions: How does the song make you feel? Does Parker’s saxophone have “a voice?” What is the story of this song? Share (3 mins) Students will share what they wrote and the class will discuss how music can have different voices, how it can actually carry on a dialogue, and how it can tell a story. MAIN ACTIVITIES Mini Lesson (10 mins) This mini lesson will offer students a few terms they can use to help describe how jazz, and music in general, tells stories. It will provide loose definitions of terms such as “melody,” “solo,” “chorus,” and “rhythm.” The mini lesson will also include a short Charlie Parker biography and attempt to situate jazz music within the context of American musical hegemony and American culture, to show students what these influences and connections mean for the character of Troy, the world of the play, and August Wilson’s writing.

11 LESSON SEQUENCE--2 Guided Practice (10 mins) The teacher will ask the students to read out loud a section of dialogue from the beginning of the play between the characters Troy, Rose, and Bono. The teacher then will then apply the musical analytical terms the class has just discussed to the feelings and words in this bit of dialogue. The goal is to see how Wilson uses jazz elements to shape his speeches. My hope through this exercise is that students will be able to see jazz, via these terms, as a lens through which to view and hear Wilson’s dialogue. ASSESSMENT Group Work (8 mins) Students work in groups of two or three to apply these same musical analysis terms to a section of dialogue that follows directly on the one the whole class just focused on during the guided practice. Students are encouraged to read these speeches out loud to grasp the musicality of the words. They then underline selected parts of speeches and write down what terms they feel apply and why. CLOSURE Sharing (5 mins) Students will share their work to the class. The teacher will see how specific they were in making their connections. Did they underline individual lines of dialogue? Can they support their conclusions with analysis based on the mini lesson? Did the groups, in general, reach the same conclusions? The teacher will then bring the discussion back to the larger idea using lenses to view and explore not just an individual work of literature but the entire world.

12 DIFFERNTIATION SUMMARY The lesson incorporates whole class, group, and individual work. It asks that students listen, speak, and write. Working individually during the Do Now, students are encouraged to listen closely to a beautiful piece of music and express what they hear and feel in words. As a whole class, the students view a brief PowerPoint presentation, and also read out loud selected lines of dialogue from the play featuring both male and female characters. In small groups, they read out loud additional pieces of dialogue and discuss with each other how the music analytic terms they have just learned apply to these speeches. The teacher can pair up stronger and weaker readers, and stronger and weaker speakers. The students can help each other grasp these concepts, and practice, within their groups, reading, analyzing, and writing skills. They can also help each other learn and collaborate on the worksheet. This lesson also focuses on jazz, a uniquely African American art form, and features the work of Charlie Parker, one of jazz’s great figures. Jazz connects both to Wilson’s style of dialogue and to a character in the play who, though not appearing in the scene we examine, is a fledgling jazz musician.

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