Today I had a pretty cool experience. Well, it didn't start off so cool. I actually arrived at school very tired. Mostly because my partner has to get up at 5 am....which means I get up at 5 am! I am one who gets pretty cranky if I don't sleep well. The day started fine...but I wasn't in my groove.
After lunch, I had 7th grade. First, I was annoyed they were goofing off in my room without me being there (I was racing down from recess duty) and someone knocked over a vase on my desk getting my books and music all wet. Not cool!
I went into warm-ups and tried to get them focused. We did some sight-singing. Finally, looking at the repertoire, I was hoping to help them make connections of the sight-singing in the repertoire we were working on. I realized after their class last week, they were not ready to sing polyphonic music. So I thought I would back off and get them singing in two-parts. I had the boys hold the "DO" and the girls sang up the scale (do-re-mi-fa-sol-la-ti-do, and back down) so they could start to hear harmonic tension and release. Then I switched. Then I asked the boys to repeat DO on a ta-ta-ti-ti-ta pattern. The girls were divided arbitrarily into two groups. One group sang Sol-La-Sol-Fa-Sol and the other sang Mi-Fa-Mi-Re-Mi on top of the boys' pattern. Essentially they were building I-IV-I-V-I chord progressions. We just kept repeating it over and over until it was solid...slowing down, speeding up. Then the magical moment every teacher waits for.....when the class clown has a twinkle in his eye and says, "That was really cool!" Ahhh....success....mad the last two hours of classes breeze by, high on that comment. Glad I made a difference today.
Tomorrow is a jam packed day of middle school classes....but Northwest Choral Society and Messiah rehearsal in the evening.
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