Music has the capability to control our emotions and feeling whether we realize it or not. It’s also allows us to release emotions either by making our own music, listening to it, or singing and dancing. For our class today, we brought in small personal drums that the students could play on and experience. We learned that many of our students had never even had the opportunity to try out a drum before! We asked the students holding the drums to demonstrate how they would play if they were feeling happy. Then they passed it to the next person and we asked that they play if they were feeling sad. We did this two more times with them feeling frustrated and excited. All the tempos and beats were clearly varied and different depending on the mood. We didn’t have to teach the students how they should play based on a different mood, but this is something they knew and were able to recognize based on how well they understand their feelings.
We also had a recent donation of old instruments, native to Thailand and the east Asian area. We passed these out and asked the students to guess where they came from, what they were made out of, and what instruments we have that are similar in America. This was a really cool way to expose students to the various instruments in the world, but also for them to see that we all are similar in some ways. Many of our students play an instrument, or more than one, and they were able to see the similarities of the instruments they play compared to these and if they could play them.
We wanted to teach our classes how to notice the effect music has on them. We handed each student a little blank booklet and colored pencils. Next, we played various kinds of music that would generally cause different kinds of feelings. We asked that while each piece of music was being played, that they would draw how they felt in that moment. It could be a picture or a memory, or just colors and scribble on the page. We really just wanted them to be able to have a visual way to see their feelings and display them other than words or writing. We asked what colors they would normally use if they were feeling sad, happy, etc. They answered with blues and greens for sad or calm and reds and oranges for happy or excited, and we asked them to keep this in mind as they were drawing out their emotions to get their point across better.
Our classes did such a great job with this project. They were able to show their various states-of-mind during each song we played, and each students interpretation was different. They were also able to stand up and explain to the class why they felt this way and how they demonstrated this on the paper. I think this was a really cool way to teach kids that they don’t have to keep their feelings in. They have a way to release what they are feeling even if it’s not through words, but it’s through colors and drawing and images.
Julie Shaffer is a new docent at Woodmere Art Museum in Philadelphia. This is her second semester volunteering with Art Sphere. She loves yoga, post-modern fiction, and art history and … Continue reading Let Us Join Hands to Honor MLK, Jr.
At the Fishtown Library Lunchtime Literacy session this week, we asked our young friends to suspend reality for the moment and enter the realm of imaginary and fantastical animals. Have … Continue reading Unicorns, Laminas, and Whatever You Can Imagine.
We began our fist class at Southwark this week. Our theme for this semester is music and meditation, as well as combining this with teaching literacy and unity. Music is … Continue reading Unison of Music + Art
Which famous Philadelphian woman was the first African American to perform at the Metropolitan Opera? Marian Anderson! She was born in 1897 in South Philadelphia. Hard-working and respectable, her mother was … Continue reading Famous African American Musicians from Philadelphia: Who Do You Know?
This past Wednesday’s art class was all about our favorite artist..ourselves! With this being my first time teaching with Art Sphere I wanted to get to know my students better, … Continue reading Learning About Our Favorite Artist…Ourselves!
This was our breakthrough assignment since coming back from the New Year and I wanted to have a “home” welcoming party. The students at Towey we’re really creative with how … Continue reading Home Designing at Towey
Music has the awesome ability and effect to shift our mood or enable us to recall fond memories. “When you listen to music you also work better, you can … Continue reading Literacy through Music Research
Color Wheel 2.0 . . . (point two point oh). What do you get when you take a trifold board with a six-part pie graph drawn on it and add … Continue reading Rolling into 2020, in Colorful Style
For the first lesson of the New Year, we had the students at Towey work on an art project called God eyes, which was used by Indians in western Mexico … Continue reading New Year (God Eyes Project & Designing Names)