Perez Elementary School

Year 2 - Grade 6

Beginning

Student #1

To start our story the students created a character. Then they took a line from their journal the week before and added a second line. They were instructed to rhyme the last word in each line to start their song lyrics.

Student #2

We started our unit by handing out a wheel of musical styles (seen on left under the journal). We improvised singing in that style, and wrote down key elements of each musical style. The students were extremely shy and hesitant to participate (much more than other classes I’ve worked with). As a result, we asked them to reflect in their journal some ways they could overcome the reluctance and become more confident.

The following week, they took a line from the journal (seen on the left) and used it as the first line of lyrics in their song.

Student #3

Here is an example of the round writing we did to create the plot for our musical. Each student wrote a portion and then passed it to two more people. It was an interesting process with the 6th grade. They care more about how their work is viewed my their classmates then the other grades and sometimes the stories were used to make jokes or show off. They also had some of the most insightful ideas too! The process was very enlightening in terms of their writing abilities, personalities and creativity.

Middle

Student #1

The story and song lyrics seen on this sheet were created in collaboration with the 6th grade and the teachers. (The teachers merely pieced the work together from the students creative work) As you can also see here the students wrote the finalized lyrics down and then added note values for all the words in the song. They thought about emphasis or stressing important words with rhythm. They were asked to consider natural speech patterns or how they would say the line rhythmically. They could work with their small groups or independently.

Student #2

The students worked independently once they started transferring the rhythms to musical notes on the treble clef. We did explain thoroughly, model examples, and allow the class to contribute ideas as a group. Then we helped the students individually while they created their own unique song. We did a worksheet the week before that did this transfer on a smaller scale. (seen under the two sheets)

Student #3

Here is a student successfully transferring the rhythms onto the treble clef and checking to make sure there is one note per syllable.

End

Student #1

How the Sun came to be

Here is a video clip of the 6th grade performance.They wrote and performed a myth of “How the Sun came to be”. Only half of the 6th grade class showed up to perform, but the students that did perform did a fantastic job. In the video you can see that the students helped with lines and the story went smoothly even with some missing students.

Overall, this class worked very hard and created a show that they can be proud of composing.

Student #2

Two weeks after the show, we took the time to watch a video of the show, and reflect on the entire process. Each student was given a blank poster and a handout with activities we’ve worked on throughout the year. They were asked to draw and write about their experiences in one of those areas. This is the start of their reflection boards.

Student #3

As a reward to all the students that attended the performance, we held a pizza party! This will hopefully entice the students that didn’t come to participate in future activities. The party helps to reinforce the student that did participate to continue the great work that they are doing. We hope that rewarding them builds a sense of pride and achievement when it comes to the work that they have done.

Year One
2011-2012
Year Two
2012-2013
Year Three
2013-2014

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