5 min: Tempos!

Here is a quick lesson you can use to help your students learn tempos using "Go for the Gold! Recorder."

Title:  Circle Up!

Resources:  Go for the Gold! Recorder (Beginner's Edition) Page 15 (Event 1 - Hot Cross Buns)

Purpose: Teaching students variations in tempo

Activity:  Copy the tempo chart from Page 15 in Go for the Gold Beginners Edition onto your chalkboard or whiteboard.  Speak to them very quickly while pointing at "Vivace" or "Presto." Speak to them in slow-motion while pointing at "Largo" or "Adagio."  Explain that composers use different tempos to indicate the speed of the piece.

Circle up the kids in a line around the room.  Have all the students begin walking around the classroom at the speed you indicate on the whiteboard.  The students love to be in charge of pointing to the tempos and "controlling" the speed of the moving line! 

Explain that "Hot Cross Buns" occurs at a walking tempo of "Andante."  See if they can find the perfect walking tempo. 

5 min: Dynamics!

Here is a quick lesson you can use to help your students learn dynamics using "Go for the Gold! Recorder."

Title:  Echoes!

Resources:  Go for the Gold! Recorder (Beginner's Edition) Page 38 (Event 5 - Little Elephant)

Purpose: Teaching students variations in dynamics

Activity:  Talk to students about places where echoes occur?  It could be in a cave, in a tiled bathroom, down a stairwell. Ask them what happens to the sound in terms of dynamics each time they hear their echo back.  Does it get louder?  Does it get softer? Does it stay the same? 

In music, sometimes we want to create variations in repeated sections to mimic an echo.  If the original dynamic is forte, what should the next repeat be?  Mezzo-forte?  Mezzo-piano?  What should the next repeat be?  Piano?  Pianissimo? 

Have the students write on the board the original dynamic (you can use symbols) and then the next dynamics. 

Check out measure 1 and 2 of "Little Elephant."  The first dynamic is marked forte and the next is marked mezzo forte.

Have a student play the measures and ask the rest of the class (the audience) to place their hand in the air to indicate the volume they hear (The higher their hand, the louder the note they hear). The idea is to have the kids drop their hands from measure 1 to measure 2.