PS/IS 686 | Brooklyn, NY

Music in May! Grades: 1-8

Hello friends and family,

Here is what has been happening…

Grade 1:

Our first graders have been exploring musical spelling games and rhythm match exercises! Using the 7 letters of the musical alphabet (A, B, C, D, E, F, G), the students had to use their knowledge of the line/space notes to spell words. It was a fun way to practice reading notes and words! Last week, they moved on to a rhythm match game and the students had to use precision to match exactly what they heard.


Grade 2:

Grade 2 is still on their musical safari! Both classes have conquered “Woodwind Pond” and have moved on to the “String Savannah”. The students have all earned their stickers for the woodwind instruments that they saved/assembled/played (piccolo, flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon) and for the strings (violin, viola, cello, bass, harp).

201 was able to capture their first brass instruments on Friday (the french horn and tuba). If you’re here this Friday morning, you’ll be helping them “play” the trombone!

202 is about to attempt to “earn” the harp, so if you’re here for Family Friday, you’ll be able to play along!!! This instrument is tricky!


Grade 3:

Third graders are now rhythm experts! They have been mastering beginner/advanced levels of rhythm matching using the Smart Board. They are perfecting their timing and finding out that it might not be as easy as they thought to play in time and/or keep a steady beat! They will be moving on to fun song/rhythm writing games in the next two weeks.


Grade 4:

Grade 4 is wrapping up their 16 measure compositions this week and practicing for our share. I love how the students are applying, and combining, their knowledge of clefs, time signatures, pitches and rhythms to their pieces. Some students are even trying to write out parts of pieces that they know (the Star Wars theme song is a huge hit!) and they are doing a great job. The students are really training their ears/brains to notate what they hear. It’s a HUGE accomplishment. Fourth grade will also be moving on to fun song/rhythm writing games in the next two weeks.


Grade 5:

Together In Dance!!

I really cannot wait for you to join us in June for our Together In Dance performance. (The final date will be coming soon!) Both 5th grade classes have now learned two songs, with choreography. The connection to their humanities unit on immigration is really evident now! Yesterday, the students were able to articulate and share the inspiration for their “character” in their dances using their knowledge of why so many immigrants came to the United States. It was amazing to hear them apply this learning in a creative way.

Next week, they will be writing their own verses to the finale piece!


Grades 6-8:

Movie Trailers!

This week students are finishing up their movie trailer projects. It’s been very entertaining to see the students recording their own sound effects and placing them in “just the right place” in the trailer. Many students have found the perfect background music to match the intensity/mood of their films, and often, it aligns perfectly with the actions on screen.  Next week, the students will be presenting these projects.