Meet the Teachers Night 2019

Meet the Teachers Night (September 26, 2019)

Music @ MELS
1300 students and counting...



SEVENTH GRADE MUSIC

I. What's this about?
  • Exploration and Craft - Picking an instrument and sticking with it
  • Collaboration - Making music with others, in different ways
  • Understanding Music in the World - Learning about the music all around us by making music, not just by consuming it.

First Recording Examples (October 2018)

Mary Had a Little Lamb (Violin)

Mary Had a Little Lamb (Cello)


End-of-Year POL Performance (June 2019)

Google Docs Video



II. What do students find challenging?
  • The first two months are exciting, but also discouraging - Early success and encouragement is key.
  • November and December are the "slump" - Listen to your child's recordings and encourage practicing.
  • When it is hard, it's easy to say that Music isn't an important subject or that some students have "talent" while others don't.

III. What resources are available?
  • Checking out an instrument (sign the permission form!)
  • Lunch open practice and help most days of the week
  • Course Website (shieh.metropolitanels.com)
  • Online tutorials on YouTube and other websites
  • IO Education (assessments system)
  • 7th Grade Weekly E-mail Updates through MailChimp
  • Purchasing an instrument

IV.  Instrument safety at home
  • Make sure the bow is (1) loose and (2) looks like this: 
           
  • Keep the instrument out of the heat or cold (never leave in the car!) and away from siblings and pets.
  • Keep the instrument in its case when not in use.
  • Do not attempt to tune or repair the instrument

Thank you for your support of Music at MELS.
Half of the school (over 450 students!) participates in Music.




EIGHTH GRADE MUSIC

I. What's this about?
  • Foundational skills for professional music making:
    • Reading staff notation
    • Ear training and tuning
    • Improvising and songwriting
    • Melody, harmony, and rhythm with a second instrument or vocal focus
  • Exploring musical processes
    • Orchestra (Exp. 1)
    • Jazz combos (Exp. 2)
    • Songwriting in bands (Exp. 3)
  • Performance experience
Orchestra & Jazz Performance in March


Songwriting Performances in June

Old Schoolers - Turning Tables Cover


100 Mile Freeway - Every Time


  • Opportunities & Dates
    • Upcoming note-reading tests are on Tuesday, October 8 and Friday, October 18.
    • SPHINX VIRTUOS Concert Trip on Friday Evening, October 11 (5-10pm)

    • Queens Borough-wide Honors Orchestra Auditions are on October 26 (also October 19)










II. What do students find challenging and what can I do?
  • There are a lot of different skills: note reading, different instruments, improvising, composing, working in a band.  Some will be easier than others for each person, and students will need to spend more time with their weak areas--which, of course, is exactly what 8th graders don't like to do.
    • Action: Check IO Education and make sure your 8th grader works at home on skills that are not as strong!
  • Projects are more creative and open-ended. This can be overwhelming for students at times. Sometimes it helps to list out or talk through challenges one by one, and often students have a lot of success when they come in at lunch to work or speak with me.
    • Action: Work with your 8th grader to pursue her or his curiosity and interests. Encourage him or her to stop by the Music room at lunch when appropriate!

The Music Room at Lunch


  • It takes a lot of courage to perform. When students are nervous, it's hard to see the big picture: (1) this is a first step toward getting more used to speaking and performing in public and (2) it will get easier the more prepared they feel.
    • Action: Supervise practice at home in preparation for performances.
    • Action: Make every effort to attend the performances and support!

III.  Resources
  • Checking out an instrument (sign the permission form!)
  • Lunch open practice Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays
  • Course Website (shieh.metropolitanels.com)
  • Online tutorials on YouTube
  • Free sheet music on musescore.com
  • IO Education login
  • Purchase an instrument?  (See attachment below)

IV.  Instrument safety at home
  • Make sure the bow is (1) loose and (2) looks like this: 
           
  • Keep the instrument out of the heat or cold and away from siblings and pets.
  • Keep the instrument in its case when not in use.
  • Do not tune or attempt to repair the instrument
Thank you for your support of Music at MELS.
Half of the school (over 450 students!) participates in Music.
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Eric Shieh,
Sep 25, 2019, 2:54 PM
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