EDTECH 504‐4173 (FA09) Susan Ferdon Lesson Plan ActivityOverviewAs part of the General Music Curriculum in Deerfield District 109, students in grades 3-5use recorder as a medium for developing music literacy skills, individual performanceskills, and ensemble skills. Students are also able to personally experience musicalconcepts (i.e. rhythm, pitch, tempo, balance) in an authentic manner. The approach tolearning has been primarily cognitivist in that information went in and led to outcomesthat can be observed.While a sequential curriculum, tied to national and state standards, has been in placefor a number of years, the district’s six schools have had limited common curriculummaterials. Curricular objectives were quite specific, but the manner in which teacherschose to address objectives was determined individually. For recorder, most teacherschose the standard approach of direct instruction using a method book. The book usedby many, including myself, has been Recorder Karate. As students learn songs ofprogressing difficulty levels, they earn colored “belts” for their recorders. Thiscombination of cognitivist-style direct instruction, familiar melodies, and a behaviorist-style reward system has resulted in instructional activities that have been effective,motivating, and fun for students.The success of Recorder Karate with my 4th graders, led me to develop a similarprogram for my 5th graders. In Recorder Taekwondo, students again learnedprogressively more difficult songs, but with greater independence and no “ceiling” totheir learning. Students were able to continue with Recorder Taekwondo songs, on theirown, even when class time was no longer used. When students learned the mostdifficult song, a newer, more challenging song was added. The first year of RecorderTaekwondo, the highest belt achieved was 1st degree black. The next year, studentsexceeded the level achieved the previous year and I added songs for 2nd and 3rd degreeblack belts. The next year, I eliminated the white belt song and “re-colored” theremaining songs, which raised the bar for all. 4th degree black belt was also added, andthough a few students began work, none finished. Last year, three students earned 4thdegree black belt and one made it all the way up to 5th degree: play the melody ofGreensleeves on soprano recorder, learn to play alto recorder, play the harmony ofGreensleeves on alto recorder, compose a Renaissance style accompaniment for twocontrasting unpitched percussion instruments and record all four parts usingGarageBand.The goal has been for students to advance at least to Purple Belt, the level at whichbasic curricular goals have been met. In order to go beyond that, students frequently
needed more time for practice and testing than was available during class time alone.They were provided with supports - fingering charts, pitch notation information,demonstration audio on the music website – and many worked before school, duringlunch recess, after school, and practiced at home. The behaviorist reward system ofyarn for their recorders was further enhanced by recognition of black belt students at theend-of-the-year Awards Assembly. In the four years that I have used RecorderTaekwondo with my students, 98% have made it to purple belt and many have gonewell beyond.Though successful, changes need to be made to 5th grade recorder instruction due tochanges in the music schedule and increased availability of common curriculummaterials and computing devices. • Spotlight on Music™ materials have been purchased so there are now teacher and student resources available district-wide, including textbooks and supplementary recorder materials. • Three carts of Netbooks have been purchased and will soon be available for classroom use. • The school day has been lengthened - 10 class periods/120 students have been added to my teaching load (44 classes a week, 450+ students total) – and the amount of planning time has been reduced. The combination of more classes and less planning time has resulted in a sharp reduction in the amount of planning time per class/student. • Available planning time (and more) is needed to adequately plan and prepare for daily teaching so Recorder Taekwondo must be limited to class time and home practice.Though the impetus for change has been largely external, the extent to whichinstruction will be impacted is within my control. The benefit of added materials andresources can offset the reduction in time available to work with students. Maximizing ofinstructional time, practice time, feedback, and testing opportunities will be possiblewhen students teach themselves and each other. Expanding upon the Humanistpractice of providing independent learning opportunities for students will allow me to actas facilitator and, thus, provide more individualized support during class time. Creationof instructional videos will enable the benefits of face-to-face music instruction (auditoryand visual) to transfer to self-directed learning activities. Further, characteristics ofCommunities of Learning, long a tradition in the world of music, can maximize the timeavailable for achieving curricular goals. The proposed changes will take advantage of awider variety of learning theories, as well as additional resources, and will result in thegreatest possible student achievement.
Recorder Taekwondo Unit 5th Grade Content Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of National Standards for Standard 2 music. Music Education Achievement a. Students perform on at least one instrument1 accurately and Standards independently, alone and in small and large ensembles, with good posture, good playing position, and good breath, bow, or stick control. b. Students perform with expression and technical accuracy on at least one string, wind, percussion, or *classroom instrument a repertoire of instrumental literature with a level of difficulty of 2, on a scale of 1 to 6. c. Students perform music representing diverse genres and cultures, with expression appropriate for the work being performed. State Goal for Through creating and performing understand how works of art are Standards Learning Illinois Learning 26 produced. Learning Apply skills and knowledge necessary to create and perform in one of Standard B more of the arts. Recorder 5 Play songs using low D, E, F#, G, A, B, C and high D. Curriculum Deerfield General Recorder 6 Read notation to learn and play songs on the recorder. Music Recorder 8 Play scales: C major, D major. Recorder 10 Develop repertoire of songs with varied meters, tempo, tonality, and difficulty levels. OLD FORMAT REVISION Whole class instruction at beginning of unit: Addition: Review of previous notation strategies Material from the Spotlight on Music and activities: Rhythm Rhyme, Music Reading section of the book, and SOM Music Notation Alphabet Song, hand staff, mnemonics. recorder materials, will supplement music notation and reading activities in Remediation: Note cards (job aides); students find core lessons. Recorder will be woven matching notation and write letter into instruction throughout the year. names above notes. Remediation: Music literacy activities will be distributed through the year. Selected students will use drill and practice software (Music Ace, Music Ace 2). Learning Theory: • Behaviorism
Whole class instruction: Addition: Recorder was used on a more limited Material from the Spotlight on Music basis in 5th grade than in 4th. A review Reading recorder materials will of 4th grade skills and songs takes place supplement activities in core lessons. in the last few weeks prior to beginning Recorder will be woven into Recorder Skills Recorder Taekwondo. instruction throughout the year. Remediation: Modified notation (letters, finger numbers, color coding, or icons) was available for students not able to play from traditional notation. Those students also had the option of watching my fingers instead. Students who are new to recorder, or have significant learning or motor issues, play alternate songs. Each song is still progressively more challenging, but the difficulty level is suited to the individual. Whole class instruction: Addition: Teacher modeling to develop fingering Higher belt students will be paired with techniques needed to play more lower belts for peer teaching of new challenging portions of the song. songs. Learning Theory: Remediation: Individual practice time provided • Communities of Practice during most music classes; teacher works with individuals as needed. Addition: Instructional videos will be created for New Songs each song. Teacher modeling of accurate song performance will be included, along with warm‐ups and technique‐building exercises. All information that was previously presented, via direct instruction to the whole class, will now be available for individuals to access independently. Videos may be accessed in class or at home. Learning Theories: • Humanism – Teacher as facilitator of learning • Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
Whole class: With less class time used for direct Individuals practice independently. At instruction, more time will be available times, students at the same belt level for individual and peer‐supervised In‐class Practice practice together and offer one another practice. help. In‐class use of peer teaching and Remediation: instructional videos (Netbooks with Students may come to music room for earphones) will allow teacher to teacher‐supervised practice. provide a greater amount of individualized feedback during class time. Learning Theories: • Humanism – Teacher as facilitator of learning • Communities of Practice • Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning Shared packets are used during class Song sheets, audio files, and videos will Home Practice and individual song sheets are available on the music website four available for students to take home. weeks before the Recorder Taekwondo Song sheet PDFs (public domain Unit begins. Students will be urged to melodies) and MP3 recordings of each get a head‐start on the easier songs, so scale and song are linked on the that there is more time during class to webpage. Students have access to all work on more advanced techniques materials both at home and at school. needed for higher belt songs. Students could continue advancing Learning Theory: through the belts, even when class time • Humanism – Teacher as facilitator was no longer being used. of learning Beginning the second week of the unit, Less class time will be used for direct most of one class period per week (30 instruction, so more teacher time will minutes of a 40 minute period) was used for be available for testing. Beginning the belt testing. Students could test for one second week of the unit, approximately Belt Testing belt per week, in class. This got 25 minutes per class period will used students up to the goal, Purple Belt for testing. As before, if students earn (grade is B), by the end of the unit. one belt per week they will make it to Some students were ready to test twice Purple Belt by the end of the unit. in one class period. Students who test at each available Students were able to test outside of opportunity will be able to make it as class time as many times per week as high as 2nd degree Black Belt before the they wanted to. The unit was scheduled end of our six‐week unit. for early spring to allow additional time for out‐of‐class testing once the Recorder Taekwondo Unit was over.