The Music in Me

pictureby Melissa Zirkel
1st Grade
Whittier Elementary School, Kansas City Public School District

Students will explore people, places, and things of the past and draw conclusions about the lives of others in relationship to their own. Students will also engage in hands-on, interactive activities that allow students to create, translate, and innovate modern approaches in song composition.

Three lessons are included and are intended to act as supplementary (or independent) material for social studies curriculum. Lessons can also be taken out of context and used individually as well.

Essential question:
*What is identity? (This is my overarching topic. Discuss the term “identity” with students and use this question as a frame to the following three lessons).

Lesson One (50 minutes)

Objective 1: Students will be able to examine the Star Spangled Banner and translate its words and meaning into current times.

Assessment 1: Students will create their own account of the national anthem by writing and illustrating their own narrative.

Guiding questions:

  • If you were an American, how would you feel? If you were British, how would you feel?
  • How would you describe the American soldiers?
  • If you could pick a side to represent, what side would you pick? Why?
  • Why was the Star Spangled Banner written?
  • Who was the Star Spangled Banner written for?

Activities (Resources):

Key Points:
What: The Star Spangled Banner is the national anthem (or song) of the United States.
How: The SSB was a poem written by Francis Scott Key. It was written during the Battle at Fort McHenry, where Americans and the British took part in a 25 hour battle.
Why: Good citizens are able to explain how Americans secured their freedoms with this war by not letting the British reclaim the US.

Procedure:

  • Hook: Close your eyes. We are going back in time… we are going back not one year, not ten years, but exactly 100 years. Picture yourself and your family living in a small home. It’s not exactly the best of times because there is a war going on. Your parents put you to sleep one night but you can’t close your eyes because outside your house in Baltimore, Maryland, you see, hear, and feel the rumble of something terrifying.
    • Vocab (anchor chart as a class): Francis Scott Key, Fort McHenry, British, Baltimore

    Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): If you were an American, how would you feel? If you were British, how would you feel? How would you describe the American soldiers?

    • Close Reading of SSB broadside (class discussion): http://www.loc.gov/resource/ihas.100010479.0
      • Highlight and replace the following words: dawn’s early light, hail’d, twilight’s gleaming, perilous fight, o’er, ramparts, gallantly streaming
      • Clarification: The battle was 26 hours—what part of the battle at Fort McHenry does Francis Scott Key write about? What is the proof? What does “O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?” mean? Why is this battle so important?

    Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): Why was the Star Spangled Banner written? Who was the Star Spangled Banner written for?

Lesson Two (50 minutes)

Objective 2: Students will be able to translate music from one language into another.

Assessment 2: Students will use electronic devices to translate a children’s song from English into their native language.
(“Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Row, Row, Row your Boat”)

Guiding questions:

  • What does it mean to translate something?
  • Why would someone want to translate a song?
  • What makes song important?

Activities:

  • 1-1 devices (student laptops)
    ***If 1-1 devices are unavailable, perform this lesson whole-group for the entire time OR ask media specialist/computer teacher for any available times to sign out and use the computer lab***

  • Directions and lyrics can be found at TranslationRhymes
  • Student Activity: StudentTranslationActivity
    • Pencil
  • Optional Extension Activity: Translation of the “Star Spangled Banner”

Key Points:
What: Translate means to take something in one language and put it into another.
How: We can use the internet (Google Translate) by typing in a word in English and translating it into another language. We do this word by word so that we might be able to make the best translation possible.
Why: Good citizens are able to share our cultures with each other through the words we speak and the songs we sing.

Procedure:
Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): Yesterday we talked about the Battle at Fort McHenry and pictured ourselves there. Turn and tell your partner one word that you used in your own MadLibs. (Have students write their word on a sticky note and create a collage).

Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): What does it mean to translate something? Why would someone want to translate a song?

  • Sing (class wide) Mary had a Little Lamb and record English lyrics on an anchor chart
    • Vocabulary: translate
  • Model: Translate first line into Spanish.
    ***Use TranslationRhymes as a guide***
  • Guided practice: invite student volunteers to practice using the translation site with remaining lyrics.

Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): What makes song important?

  • Independent practice: StudentTranslationActivity
    (Students will use electronic devices to translate the remaining lines of “Mary had a Little Lamb” from English to Spanish and “Row Your Boat” (if time permits) from English into their native language.
  • Optional Extension Activity: Translation of the “Star Spangled Banner”
    • La Bandera de las estrellas (Spanish version)
      If time permits, translate lyrics to the first verse of the “Star Spangled Banner.” Sing in English and Spanish.

Homework: Pick a song that you know and come with the first line of the song translated from one language to another (i.e. English to Spanish, Spanish to English OR English in conjunction with native language).

Lesson Three (50 minutes)

Objective 3: Students will be able to create a musical composition.

Assessment 3: Students will arrange one bar musical phrases, title, and illustrate their music manuscript, orally describing the character, mood, and rationale behind their composition.

Guiding questions:

  • What does it mean to make something new?
  • What are things that a song needs?
  • How do we create something like a song?

Activities:

Key Points
What: A musical composition is something that someone makes. It has notes that make a song.
How: The person who makes a musical composition is YOU! We do this by taking a group of notes and putting them in the order we want, from left to right.
Why: Good citizens respect each other creatively. We are able to make things to show others who we are, what we do, and what we like.

Procedure:
Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): Yesterday we did some exploring with music in other languages. Who brought in some music that they translated from one language to another? Explain why you brought it and what it means to you.

  • Hook: Composing music is like a puzzle. You have to decide where all the pieces go.
    • Puzzle activity: Project Ms. Zirkel’s musical manuscript (CompositionMaterials pg. #5) as a guide. (I would suggest blowing up the puzzle to as big as you can make it with the scale allotted at your school to make a big puzzle and cut into puzzle pieces and distribute to students either individually or as per small groups). Students will use their pieces to make our music puzzle
    • Vocabulary: (anchor chart as a class) composition, composer

Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): What does it mean to make something new?

  • Model: What do songs need? (Make a list).
    • Notes, music paper, title, etc.

Discussion (turn and talk, share out, etc.): How do we create something like a song?

  • Activity: My Music
    • Please refer to “My Melody” (see “MyMelodyDirections” attachment)
      (Students will arrange one bar musical phrases, title, and illustrate their music manuscript).
    • Perform (teacher or student) and ask after performance: Why did you assemble the music in that why? What did it mean to you? How does it make you feel?

Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.1
Demonstrate understanding of the organization and basic features of print.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.1.a
Recognize the distinguishing features of a sentence (e.g., first word, capitalization, ending punctuation).
NAFME Standards
4. Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines.
6. Listening to, analyzing, and describing music.
7. Evaluating music and music performances.
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Melissa ZirkelAbout the Author
Melissa Zirkel
missyzirkel@yahoo.com
mzirkel@kcpublicschools.org

 

About Banner Moments
Made available as part of the 2014 Banner Moments K-12 Institute—a project of the American Music Institute of the University of Michigan and the Star Spangled Music Foundation, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities

This entry was posted in Elementary, F.S. Key, Fort McHenry, Fort McHenry, Grade Level, K-2, Language Arts, Library of Congress, Music Choral, Social Studies and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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