Presentation on theme: "Guided Internships Learning Through Music Consulting Group University of Minnesota Ramsey International Fine Arts Center Minneapolis Public Schools."— Presentation transcript:
Guided Internships Learning Through Music Consulting Group University of Minnesota Ramsey International Fine Arts Center Minneapolis Public Schools
The Players UMN Scott Lipscomb Amy Jo Johnson Alyssa Wyatt Hanna Dorn Jonathan Edington Aaron Marks Artists Laura Grant Chris Griffith LTMCG Dee Lundell Corey Sevett Ken Freed Larry Scripp Ramsey Ann Blatti Laurel Lawson Sally Scott Jennifer Vaillancourt Stacy Aldrich Beth Hulting Pat Kelly Jane Mason Karen Hart MPS Pat Teske
Alyssa I have been working with two different third grade classrooms on the Vivaldi Project. Classroom A has already seen the first two lessons, while Classroom B has only experienced the first so far. While in front of Classroom A, I felt that the first lesson was extremely productive. We listened to a recording of solo voice (in French so they couldnt understand the words) and piano, and as we listened, we wrote down how the music made us feel and what we heard and saw because of the music. After the song was finished, I didnt even ask the question before several students had their hands raised, eager to share their thoughts. The same five or six girls always volunteered to answer, and their answers were creative and connected to the musicjust what I had hoped for. I began asking other students to speak also. These students were a little more hesitant with their answers, but they were able to give me some feedback on how the piece made them feel although they may not have known why.
Alyssa When I entered Classroom B to teach the same lesson, I could immediately sense that things were different. The students desks were all faced outward toward the walls and windows, so they all had to turn in their desks to see me, and I had to continue turning to make eye contact with all of them. After playing the music and asking for their reflections, very few were willing to share. As I glanced around the room, most of their papers were also blank. I began to ask more leading questions, which I had not wanted to do in case of tinting their perspectives. When students did share their thoughts and feelings, they could not explicitly connect them to the music. Of the few students who were willing to talk, most of them seemed to blurt out just about anything. To me, these students had more of a negative energy that affected the others (e.g., I felt bad. Why did you feel bad when you listen to this song? I didnt like the singer. She was bad. Then another student retorted at him that it was opera and its supposed to sound like that). When I left that classroom and reviewed their listening journals, there were a few creative entries from students who really seemed to enjoy and understand the activitystudents who didnt actually speak during class.
Amy Jo Last year, Nancy Ericksons 2 nd grade class was not going to have vocal music as a special. She knew about the Learning Through Music project and asked if an activity could be planned for her class. I went to meet with her and we discussed which subject we would try to incorporate and how. We decided on a musical about Social Studies. In reviewing the units that were coming up, Neighborhoods seemed to fit best. So we went to work. I watched as Ms. Erickson had the class tell her everything they knew about their neighborhood, what stores and services were there, who lived there, how it was set up, etc. She then had them talking about goods and services, one of the main parts of the unit, as well as how each others neighborhood differed from one another. I then went to work writing the theme song for our mini-musical. It contained the definitions for neighborhood, goods, and services; it also made the point that if your neighborhood is not like mine, Ill have to invite you over sometime!
Amy Jo Every week I would come in to teach a new song; one about a salon, another about a bakery, and so on. I tried to incorporate different musical ideas and techniques: syncopation, a round, duple, triple and compound meters. Even if the concepts were too far ahead for them to understand, they still performed well and were learning about these styles whether they knew it or not! After singing the song, the kids would then journal about whether it was a place with goods or for services. I even had three students help me compose one of the songs about the dry cleaners in our make-believe neighborhood. At first, they wanted to have the melody just like another song and the words were very repetitive. I gently prompted them to think of new melodies by changing directions and rhythm. Once we had our first lines, I had them think of rhyming words so that they could stay away from the repetition. They decided on a jazz style for the song and that it should have three solos plus a chorus where the whole class sings. They wanted to be the soloists, naturally! We tried adding in some scat at the end, just for fun. It turned out to be one of the kids favorites!
Amy Jo On the last rehearsal day before our dress rehearsal, I had the kids audition for solos in groups of three to hear where they were in terms of vocal skill and memorization on the songs. Almost all of the girls were eager to audition, but only two boys tried out. Interestingly enough, they were the two boys who had been the trouble-makers over the past few weeks! They rarely looked interested in the lessons and if they got attention it was negative. I was shocked! Ms. Erickson later told me that one of the boys used to be so shy he would hide from the rest of the class under desks and in corners. He then flipped and became quit the handful. Now he was standing in front of his peers, singing the song from Franklins Bakery.
Amy Jo When we had learned all of the songs, Ms. Erickson wrote the spoken script for our play. She then invited all of the parents and we had a full house for our musical on neighborhoods. I directed their songs and the parents enjoyed it thoroughly! Upon seeing her son read his lines out loud on his own, one mother looked as if she were going to be in tears. He was never one to be the center of attention in a good way, and here he was speaking loudly and clearly in front of a number of adults and his peers. The children were attentive and respectful to all of the other speakers and singers, and it was clear from their journaling and other activities that they knew everything a second grader should know about their neighborhoods.
Hanna Dorn Opera Instrumental Auditions 4 th grade
Hanna Over the period of a couple weeks, Corey, Amy Jo, and I tested around fifty students at Ramsey Elementary to determine who would be best suited to play instruments in the 4 th Grade Opera. After some discussion, Corey and I decided to assess their ability to keep a steady beat, learn simple recorder melodies, play xylophone ostinatos, improvise rhythms, and stay focused (i.e. behave well). We would then select the best dozen students to play in an instrumental ensemble for the production. As we began testing, I expected an all or nothing scenario where kids would either be musical all around or not. I had always thought that musicality must work similarly to intelligence – intelligence generally carries across academic subjects and savants are rare. I assumed that the musical skills we were testing were interrelated enough that a child would show consistency across areas.
Hanna As the results came in, however, I discovered that my intuition was wholly wrong. In the group of fifty or so students, there were only a handful who were gifted across the board. Most students were wildly variable; they might be able to improvise sophisticated rhythms using triplets, but were uncoordinated with the recorder and xylophone, or vice versa. It appeared that musical strengths and weaknesses were highly individualized. The results got me thinking about the origin of our individual differences. Here were fifty children who were receiving the same music instruction at an arts school to wildly diverse effect. I reflected on my own experience growing up as the child of musicians and conjectured that considerations outside of school (e.g. home environment, genetics, etc.) must have a strong impact on musicality.
Hanna The audition results were encouraging in the sense that a child might do miserably in three areas, but be quite gifted in another. The dewy-eyed idealist in me was disappointed to discover the wide variance in ability among students – Id like to think that everyone is equally capable – but this understanding will inform the way we teach children in the future.
Jonathan Edington Rhythm & Reading Group Testing 5 th grade (ELL)
Jonathan I have been doing the reading tests for the fifth grade ELL students. After Corey and Amy Jo spend two weeks teaching the students the words with rhythm, I give them a series of tests. The first test comes with no prior work on the words. The second test is immediately preceding the in-class learning activities. Next, I give a post-test on the same words as well as a test on the same words in a random order. Finally, the students get one last test on the words after they are complete with their in-class learning. The experience working with students whom speak English as a second language is very different from working with native English speakers. There is a definite communication barrier. It is also one I have never experienced.
Jonathan The students are generally excited about their testing. They do not always want to show you that they like it, but after the test is over, they are always eager to know how they did. It seems as though they like it even more as the words get harder and they get more experienced with reading the English language. I had one student stop me in the hall after I was done testing just to read for me some more. I love that they are so excited and are hungry for success. I notice a consistency with the students. Since each student is eager to do their best, they always start out reading a list as fast as they can. Usually, they start at a faster rate than they are able to read the whole list. However, after the first few words (generally 5 or 6) they fall into a rhythm. I find this especially interesting since they are learning these words with a rhythm. Although the students all learn the words together, each individual develops their own variation on the rhythm learned in class.
Jonathan One consistency within this variation is the placement of the beat in relation to prosody. Even though the tempo of reading is different, the students are able to recognize that a multiple syllable word should be contained to one macro beat (dividing a ¼ note into 2-8 th notes). One student, who speaks very little English, had a hard time with this at first, but is coming into her own. Now, she reads English better than she speaks it. This method of learning is something I have done in my own studies. When I started college in the Biology program, I found myself memorizing all of the scientific words in a rhythmic way. I had not realized that this was an actual learning technique until I started testing these students. This technique is transferable to other subject areas as well as daily learning in general.
Jonathan I have noticed that the students are learning lists more quickly as their course continues. There is an increase in learning time between the first couple of lists and the most recent lists (5 and 6). I am definitely not a researcher [supervisor not: yet!], but it seems that they are getting more comfortable with this style of learning and are able to apply it faster than before. It is becoming ingrained in their mind instead of just a practice.
Aaron My involvement as a guided intern in the Learning Through Music project has allowed me to participate in a number of personally and professionally valuable experiences in my short time in the program. One of the projects I am most invested in is the Odes project with the 4 th grade students at Ramsey International Fine Arts Center. This is one of many integrated assignments the students work on throughout the school year. The Odes project in particular focuses on the relationship between music and language arts, mostly through the concept of text setting. As an intern, my involvement began after the students had been taught the lesson and completed the assignment. I worked with a fellow intern to establish a standard of grading using the provided rubric and proceeded to assess a large number of the assignments. We encountered several frustrations in our attempt to reach a reliable scoring standard and eventually it became clear that the rubric required revision. The rubric went through several discussions and a great deal of feedback was provided regarding its improvement. Perhaps the most valuable knowledge I will take from this project is the experience of working together with classroom teachers to create a better product for the classroom.
Aaron Coming into this project as a music education major and a life-long musician, I saw the purpose of this assignment as teaching students how to put lyrics to music – a very one dimensional view. Dr. Lundell brought her language arts background to the project and helped me realize that the students were learning more than just music; they were learning about language devices, vocabulary, syllabic division, and word stress. With this two dimensional view in mind, I drafted a revised rubric with individual sections for each component, allowing each to be assessed separately and added together for a final score. While the form of the new rubric has already taken shape, the final part of the process in still in progress. The grading criteria are being reworked to provide more objective grading. Current discussion topics include the need for more quantitative criteria that meet a certain qualitative developmental standard and how to breakdown the percentage distribution scores so that they represent a meaningful piece of information.
Aaron This process has been valuable in allowing me to interact and work with classroom teachers, apply knowledge gained from professional education courses, and take responsibility for the revision of a project. I expect the experience Ive gained from this project to help me in my own classroom because the project involves a real application with very real challenges that I will face in my own professional career.