Exploring Rhythm using Drums

For the past two weeks, the elementary has begun exploring rhythms using only drums.  In order to help the students understand how music should be layered and arranged, we used only drums and no other instrument.  12242096_10208406492426343_1159066160_n 12243750_10208406487306215_1027831072_nBasic drums rhythms were created in Maschine to help guide the students to listen for the rhythm they need to match.  12244022_10208406492626348_251112365_n 12270150_10208406486266189_52090382_nMost of the students were successful in synchronizing with the rhythms they heard played by the speakers.  We began counting to the beat in order to understand how many times the drum should be hit.  The beats and the children loved the challenging rhythms.12270244_10208406486546196_1152047786_n By participating in a drumming experience, children can be working on attention, impulse control, and decision-making skills.  Next, we sat down in a circle and played “telephone” using the drum rather than our words. It was interesting to see how the rhythm initially started and how it ended once it made its way around the circle.
use 3 use 4Playing a drum or percussion instrument can be a useful way to communicate none verbally and to listen to another person’s nonverbal communication.  Rhythmic pattern is one of the most important elements of music and typically the initial layer in the majority of songs.

Posted in 2015, Kinder and 1st | Leave a comment

Exploring Reflections

Children in rainbow room had a provocation ready for them as they entered the hallway at the light table with individual mirrors to explore. Without any instruction, the majority of the students began pointing at their facial features in the mirrors.

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The teachers used this as an opportunity to identify all of their facial features and allow the students to teach each other.  Counting, arrangement , location, and color were all addressed in this exploration.  Later each student was given a marker and invited to draw on the mirror.  This medium was introduced in order  for the teachers to see if after identifying their facial features if their marks would become more purposeful.

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Would their scribbles be created on top of a feature in order to represent it?


To the teachers surprise, their scribbles were very controlled and placed in smaller areas, over reflections of their eyes, nose, and mouth.  The concentration and control over their marks can be seen in the images above.


Posted in 2015, Toddler 1 | Leave a comment

Painting an Ocean

The children in house room have been exploring mermaids and where they would live!  Recently, the students created mermaids out of loose parts and now they would like to create the back drop for their installation.  Children were asked where the mermaids came from and where they live.  Immediately they all replied, “in an ocean!”

IMG_7538The children began mixing the perfect color blue for the ocean by adding white and blue together.  Through this process the children were introduced to color theory and specifically focused on tints when they added white to the blue to lighten the color.IMG_7539

IMG_7542After mixing the paint, they began to paint all over the butcher paper .

IMG_7548This project allowed the children to  work on their team building skills  while creating a community art piece for the classroom.IMG_7557To add in a little more fun  at the end of this provocation, they turned it into a sensory  exploration where they began painting their hands and stamping them on the paper!IMG_7569




Posted in 2015, Pre School | Leave a comment

Using Loose Parts to Create Dragonflies

The exploration of dragonflies continues! The students were invited to build a dragonfly by using loose parts.
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Loose parts inspire children to use their imagination and creativity on their own terms and in a unique way. Loose parts are materials that can be moved, carried, combined, redesigned, lined up, and taken apart and put back together in multiple ways.



It can be used alone or combined with other materials. There is no set of specific directions for materials that are considered loose parts. The child is the direction.


This provocation was provided so we could allow the children to be creative and innovative, which we believe is just as essential to learn as reading and writing. We encourage the children to experiment and engage.


Children  created their own version of dragonflies and used the loose parts as a “tool” to describe the various parts.  They created a unique representation  of a dragonfly by using their own creativity and individuality. Their were no two pieces that were alike and majority were used as different parts for different purposes.


The link below shares some information about the theory of loose parts:


Posted in 2015, Pre Kinder | Leave a comment

Exploring Rhythm using Drums

Infants continue their exploration  of rhythm using drums.Rhythm is a very powerful tool when developed at a young age .


Upon entry, the children immediately noticed that drums were placed in the middle of the room. The children were very intrigued and ready  to explore the sounds they can create with several different materials.


Initially , the children hit the drums with only their hands. Clapping steadily while the children hit the drum surfaces allowed the children to begin understanding that each drum made a different sound.


A few of the children chose to introduce new materials to the exploration.  Using toy balls, the children  hit the drum hard or soft.


One child enjoyed hitting the drum  very softly with the plastic blue ball, while another enjoyed hitting the snare drum very hard with the rubbery yellow ball.



This exploration allowed the children to develop a cognitive skill known as beat induction which directly influences rhythm.

Posted in 2015, Infants | Leave a comment