Saturday, March 9, 2013

St. Patrick's Day Recorder Activity

My 3rd graders - they are an awesome bunch and one of my favorite grades to teach.  They've been really busy recently, working on our Cowboy Program.  The performance was a great success, and now we are ready to put our full focus on the recorder.

I created this activity to give my 3rd graders extra practice with the pitches B, A, and G but without requiring them to read the pitches on the staff just yet.  They will also be using basic rhythms.

I bought the shamrocks from Dollar Tree and created the letter cards myself.   I also created these printables for you to use, in case you don't have Popsicle sticks or shamrocks.  You can get them here: St. Patrick's Day Rhythm Activity for Recorder.  The printables include B-A-G shamrocks (recorder), Do-Re-Mi shamrocks (singing - I want my students to make connections between singing and playing), time signatures (2/4 and 3/4), bar lines, double bar line, repeat sign, two quarter note cards, two eighth note pair cards, and two quarter rest cards.

First, the students choose a time signature.  Then, they lay down the corresponding number of solfa shamrocks (enough to create two measures of 3/4 and up to three measures of 2/4) .  Above the solfa shamrocks they add the corresponding absolute pitch shamrocks. They add the barline(s) and either double bar line or repeat sign at the end.  Then, they create rhythms using the cards.

Then, the students follow this practice routine:
1. Chant rhythms on ta, titi, or shh.
2. Sing the rhythms on solfa with hand-signs.
3. Sing rhythms on 'doo' while tapping recorder mouthpiece in rhythm with finger (to simulate the tongue).
4. Play rhythms on 'B'.
5. Sing rhythms on letter name while moving fingers on the recorder.
6. Sing rhythms on 'doo' while moving fingers on the recorder (match pitches).
7. Play song on recorder.

We will create a few examples together, following all 7 steps.  Then, the students will create independent examples for the class to play.

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