Monday, February 11, 2013

OMEA- Folk Songs- Cumberland Gap, Pease Porridge, Diddle Dumpling, Billy Billy

This weeks posts will work slightly different than usual.  I will still post Monday-Thursday, but each day I will be discussing workshops I attended at the Ohio Music Education Association Convention this past week.  Today I will give you some ideas from the work shops based around Traditional AmericanFolk Songs, tomorrow I will post about new book ideas and movement activities to go along with them , Wednesday I will review some products I bought and give you SMARTboard ideas (with links to files), and Thursday will be focused on the  Multi-Cultural workshops I attended.  If you want any more info on any of the Clinicians, or their ideas let me know!

The First workshop I went to centered around American Folk Songs was one from Lynn Kleiner.  If you have not been to one of her workshops to need to get one ASAP.  She is amazing.  Read more about her and her products here:  If you become a member at her site ($75.00 a year)  you can get free downloads and discounts on a lot of stuff.

At the workshop she gave us an orffestration for Cumberland Gap as well as turned it into a Rondo with the poem "Diddle Diddle Dumpling" and the song "Pease Porridge Hot".  The orffestration used very fun instruments such as Washboard and spoons along with the trad. xylophones.  Each section also had a fermata and she gave me the great idea of laminating a sign with a HUGE fermata on it for the teacher, and later a student, to hold up each time the fermata comes around so everyone remembers.  Great way to introduce the fermata to younger kids.  The order for the rondo went: CG vs 1, Diddle Diddle, CG vs 2, Pease Porridge and then all together.  Each section had either movements or rhythm writing to go with it.  She used chair rhythms (1 chair = 1 beat, 2 chairs would be a half note, 2 people on 1 chair is paired eighths, etc) for Diddle Diddle and then oatmeal cups with spoons for Pease Porridge (1 spoon in a cup = quarter note, 2 = paired eighth notes, 0= rest).   The whole of this activity will be her new book coming out soon- My Trip to the Mountains.  Check it out! I have a lot of her other books and love them!  All of her books have reproducible worksheets, rhythm cards and more.

Lay down boys, take a little nap     (I  I   I  z  II II I z)
 m      r       d        m  m  s s   l

Lay down boys, take a little nap     (I  I   I  z  II II I z)
 m      r       d       l,     l,  d d d
Lay down boys, take a little naaaaaap   (I  I   I  z  II II I z)
  m      r      d       m   m  s s   l______

Fourteen miles to the Cumberland Gap   (I I I II  II I I z)
  m    d      d     d  d    l,      l,    d      d

*Note I have only given you the melody/ rhythm of Cumberland Gap due to copyright, check out her books for the full orffestration, or write your own!  The asterisk in the song = a fermata.

Another Workshop I went to that focused on American Folk Songs was one given by Pamela Stover.  This workshop used the song "Here's the way to Billy Billy" and she showed us how to lead students come up with their own orff accompaniment for the song.  She taught us what a "good" ostinato is- one where NONE of the rhythms line up and then how to transfer those to the instruments, having them set up in a pentatonic key.  After the ostinato was established,  the 'students' improvised using first body percussion and then on the xylophones/ glockenspiels/ and metallophones knowing they just had to land on do at the end of the verse.  We then chose one pattern that we liked and all got to learn it to play along with the song.  You can even go further to have them notate this pattern, but we did not in the workshop.  Feel free to change the timbres on each verse- first Just woods, then metals, then both, or first basses, then alto, then glocks, etc.  Also feel free to add in color parts ( a scrape or a boom) at some point in the song to make it more exciting! 

Remember- you can lead students to playing more than just the beat!  They can play broken borduns, changing borduns, crossovers, etc.  Help them discover more fun ways to play, rather than just playing the beat all the time!  (if you want more info on this, I will post in more detail next week!) 

She also taught us the game for "Billy Billy" which is a line game.  You start with two lines facing each other (lines A and B), across from your chosen partner.  
Verse 1:  pairs connect hands and alternate a pushing/ pulling motion 
Verse 2: Most step clap to the beat while the 1st person in Line A makes up a motion to use while traveling down the set.  The cross lines at the end so they are now in Line B. 
Verse 3:  Most continue to step clap to the beat while the 1st person in Line B imitates the action their partner did during the previous verse and ends in Line A.  
Continue the game until all have had a turn to improvise a movement.  

*Picture comes from The Kodaly Context by Lois Choksy, pg 226. 

I am so excited to try both of these activities with my students!  My 6th are doing ti-tom (eighth- dotted quarter) right now, which works for Billy and Cumberland gap is great for 2nd and 3rd.  I am excited to get them on the instruments more!   

Be sure to check back tomorrow for Smartboard and literature ideas I got from the conference! 

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