What We're Learning
We started out the year reviewing what we learned in First Grade and adding important building blocks to our musical knowledge. The musical elements are broken down into two main categories; rhythm and melody. Rhythm refers to the pattern of long and short notes that create a song. Melody refers to the higher and lower tones or pitches that are used to create a song. Last year we mastered various rhythmic ideas such as: quarter note (ta), two eighth notes (ti-ti), quarter rest (rest) and repeat sign. We also mastered the first three melodic elements in the instructional sequence so, mi and la.
We started the year learning a long rhythm called half note (too). After reviewing our prior knowledge we moved on to learning a new melodic element, do (pronounced “dough”) and re (pronounced "ray"). By the end of Second Grade we will have mastered the Pentatonic Scale, which is a five tone scale compromised of do, re, mi, so, and la. The scale is considered to be a mile marker in our musical knowledge because of the vast amount of music that can be created with these five tones.
Using the Kodály method, I teach mainly using folk songs. These songs are typically passed down through the generations in a vocal tradition which creates many variants - so you may know a slightly different version than what I teach in class! The beauty of using folk songs to do the bulk of the learning is that each song has a game that corresponds with it - so the kids are learning even when they are playing!
Here are some songs that your child should know from music class!
Hot Cross Buns
Button You Must Wander