Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Junk Band Challenge

Homework: Bring in instrument building supplies tomorrow!

There are already lots of great supplies, but we can definitely use more. Long cardboard tubes, plastic bottles, rubber bands, things to shake, metal bits and pieces... the possibilities are endless.

Today's class: Warmups for Monday, Tuesday and today were due.

Bandleaders received the "Junk Band Challenge" assignment sheet with all the requirements for the project, due next Friday, September 25th.

Each section came up with a list of instrument types to choose from when constructing their instruments. The traditional orchestral groupings are: brass, woodwinds, strings, percussion. The 6th graders came up with categories based on how their instruments will be played. For example, 6D has bangers, pluckers, strummers, shakers, blowers, squishers, loners (for instruments that don't fit into any other category) and maybe one or two more that I missed.

Each student received a blank rhythm grid and filled it out to create their own rhythm that their group could play together. Bands also experimented with playing two or more different rhythms at the same time and stringing all the rhythms together. When the bands had practiced their rhythm for a while, they were allowed to try it out on some instruments in the classroom. Some of these exotic instruments included:

didgeridoo - Australian, a long hollow wooden tube that you blow into
berimbau - Brazilian, a sort of bow with a gourd attached. You hit the stretched wire with a stick.
hand drum - Tibetan, a two headed drum made of wood and hide
claves - wooden sticks
toy cymbals

Tomorrow: instrument building and practice

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