Grade 5 – Discovering Beethoven and His Works (Part 1)
This week I’m breaking off a little from routine to teach my students about a classical composer that they should know. I started off showing them a video that explains briefly about the life of Beethoven. As we go along watching the video, I prompt the students about what the narrator said in the video. They were really attentive as they could answer my questions. I also had a short discussion about Beethoven as a person. I told them that knowing these information will be useful perform the activities that I have prepared for them.
After showing the video, I taught them to sing Ode to Joy with very interesting lyrics in it. https://www.pianopronto.com/blog/free-piano-sheet-music-ode-to-joy-lyrics-level1/
I liked the lyrics that was created with this famous Symphony No.9. Usually people only can sing the song by humming or using nonsense syllables (like ‘la’) to present the song but this lyric arrangement really engages you.
I believe that the Classical Music still has a lasting legacy. The tune of Ode to Joy is popular I did not really have to teach the tune to the song. The students were able to sing on their own and the words really fit in nicely. From this activity today, I discovered that the Grade 5 students can really sing and I wonder why I did not give them more singing lessons.
The next activity for the lesson was a word search. They were given a brief biography of Beethoven. The students are required to find keywords in the biography and find the 10 words in the word search task sheet. Every student is given a copy of the biography and the word search is done in pairs. The students were only given 8 minutes to complete. I had to shorten the time given to them as previous activities took a little longer than expected. While the students were doing their word search, I went around the class to observe how they respond to the activity. I constantly remind them of the time and gave them some tips on what words they should be looking for.
By the end of the given time, most groups could only find the 7 words/phrases in the word search. I wrote down the words/phrases that the students could find on the white board. In general, only 9 words/phrases could be found by the students. After that, I showed them the correct answers on the board through the projector.
For the last activity of the lesson, I prepared a role play activity for them. I have prepared a name list for 3 groups and each group has specific roles for each members. After dividing the groups, I placed all the role play sheets on each group’s table. Behind each role play sheets are the roles the students would have to take on for the role play activity. Each group has different numbers of actors. There would be at least 2 observers, 1 director and 1 assistant director. Hence, there were roughly 8 to 9 members in each group.
The students were only given 5 minutes to make a brief preparation of what they could do for the activity. So little was given to them as I was already running out of time. In that short 5 minutes, I was able to observe that one group was taking their roles seriously. One group was still discussing on what they should be presenting. Another group a rehearsing a little.
As time was limited, I got them to do an exit task which looks like this.
|Beethoven: Discovering his life and works
Did I learn more about Beethoven today’s lesson?
What did I discover about Beethoven?
Did the activities help me understand Beethoven?
How did the activities help me understand this great composer?
Name: _____________________________________ Date:_______________________
I gave them a guided exit task as I wanted them to focus on what they have experienced or learn today.
By the end of this class, I realize that the students needed more time to complete an activity.