Sunday, September 29, 2013

Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons: Practice melodic dictation

I absolutely LOVE to incorporate literature into my music classroom.  As a child, I debated whether to become a music teacher or a librarian.  I love to read and do so whenever I can find a spare minute.

Anyway, there are so many great books out there that we can use for vocal exploration, rhythmic chants, etc.  One of my new favorite books is "Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons" by Eric Litwin.  You can see a video preview of the book here:

The book is really entertaining, and my kids love it!  I use it for vocal exploration (words like POP!) and for the addictive song that Pete keeps singing.  But, my new favorite way to use this book is when we are practicing melodic notation on the staff.

I talk about Pete's "lost buttons" and how I found them - on the staff!

At a recent Orff workshop, we did a "make and take" day where I got this fabulous idea - cookie sheets from the dollar store with electrical tape (also from the dollar store) as the staff.  I put a 3-line staff on the back of the cookie sheet and a 5-line staff on the front, so I can use this with all of my kiddos.  With my older kids, I use it to spell words when we are working on absolute pitch names, and for everybody else, I use it for melodic dictation.  The "buttons" are actually magnets that I found at the Dollar Tree.  They work perfectly when we are talking about Pete's "lost buttons"!

There are lots of other ways you can use these cookie sheets - I love having these in my classroom :)

For some reason, these photos won't rotate. Sorry, folks!

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