Sycamore class have had a great introduction to Music Technology this term and have impressed us all with how quickly they have extended their musical skills using Garage Band. The children began the term by learning to record and edit a simple sampler before adding smart drums and a bass line. They were able to explore and change different sounds and make their own choices for their compositions. The children quickly realised the importance of keeping a consistent beat to ensure all of their recordings were in time with each other so they began to use an electronic metronome to support with this. We have looked at tempo and dynamics this term and the children now know how to maintain a balance between instruments and vocal recordings to produce a successful composition. Year 6 have also learned about the history of Rap music this term and listened to different recordings from different rap artists. We discussed the main structure of rap and the use of rhyming couplets. Their task was then to compose their own rap with a rhythmic live loop backing to accompany. Sycamore class learned how to create, organise and manipulate different live loop cells to a given beat to accompany their lyrics. The children also chose to extend their compositions by adding different effects such as mixing and fading in/out to improve their rap. Year 6 organised and arranged their ideas successfully to engage their audience and performed these to their peers.
It is very exciting to be back teaching music to Sycamore and Maple class again this term. The children will be introduced to The Firebird by Stravinsky, linked to the BBC Ten Pieces project. They will enjoy exploring how the characters and plot of this Russian Folk Tale are described through Stravinsky’s music and they will also compare other closely linked musical versions. The children will develop their listening skills and reflect on particular recorded pieces of music, considering how musical elements such as timbre, tempo, dynamics and pitch are used and changed by composers for particular effects. They will have lots of opportunities to improvise and compose this term, drawing upon ideas used by Stravinsky and creating their own motifs and tunes for a particular purpose. Both classes will develop their rhythm and staff notation skills using tuned/untuned instruments and we look forward to seeing the children build their confidence in performing as a soloist and as an ensemble.