Hey guys, sorry I didn’t post yesterday-the news we got on Monday about not going back to school this year hit me pretty hard. I’m sure you were all just as sad as I was that we won’t see each other again until next school year. As I was scrolling my phone right after the announcement, I came across this video of musicians from the Toronto Symphony playing Appalachian Spring. On March 12th, just before we found out that we’d be taking time off from school, we went on a field trip to see our Richmond Symphony play this piece. I cried as soon as I heard it again. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to listen to it today, and if you feel sad, that’s ok. If like me, you need a little time to feel your feelings, that’s ok. You are allowed to mourn the loss of this school year together.
Now, just because we aren’t together in person, doesn’t mean you can’t practice your music skills of course! I am ready to get back to sharing with you, and when you are ready, I hope you’ll check out scratch.mit.edu. I use this site every year on STEM day with the big kids, but it’s great for kids of all ages (even grown ups!). There is an app you can download called ScratchJr which is especially geared toward 5-7 year old students.
On the site, jut click the start creating button or the create button at the very top by the word scratch to start coding! There’s a tutorial for you right on the screen that shows you how to get started, so click play and it will show you how to put the blocks together to create all sorts of things. If you click on the tutorials button up top, you can click on music, and then the “make music” or “record sounds” buttons, the tutorial video will change to one about coding musical sounds. Once you get the hang of it, try the starter projects page for things you can edit to make them your own. For example, I took the starter piano project and color coded the notes like the ones on our resonator bells at school and their costumes flash back to white as you press the keys.
Students always beg me to take home the tutorial cards so that they can play with this one on their own, and now they’ve got plenty of time to do it!
Have you been taking lots of walks lately? I know we are all trying our best to get outside when we can, so maybe you can make your next walk a listening walk. There is music all around you, if you just listen…