For the end of the year, many of my classes have been creating melodies with DASH the Robot and his Xylophone attachment.
This robot is SUPER easy to use and great for the little kids. Once you download the app, all you have to do is touch the screen on your device to tell him what color to play when. You can also tell him how many times to play each "measure" which has 4 beats (or 8 eighth notes) AND if he should move while playing that measure.
For my mini-lesson to practice solfege using DASH, first the whole class figures out what colors are the solfege we know. For 2nd grade- we were practicing so-la- and mi which are light blue, dark blue, and yellow respectively. The first time students programmed DASH in small groups, they could only use these colors.
After a small group made their short song, they got to play it for the class. The class then figured out the solfege pattern of the song and wrote it on the staff. I did this as a whole group activity, but you could use manipulatives such as lap staffs too! Another extension would be to have the groups write their own song down on a worksheet and have the class sight-read the songs another day.
Check out a song my kiddos made:
2nd graders wrote an awesome so-mi-la song with the help of our friend DASH! #elmused #kodaly #orff @WilsonElem #iteachmusic pic.twitter.com/vyg47f7oVs— Emily Church (@EmilyChurch86) April 24, 2017
I have also been using DASH to play mystery songs for my students. He knows a lot of s-m-l songs like Lucy Locket, Rain Rain Go Away, and more! My kiddos have been loving listening to him instead of me to figure out what song is next!
I plan on using DASH a whole lot next year as well!