Finding your own contemplative space to explore creative ideas is a positive aspect to online learning at home. From the individual student responses to the Seesaw Drumming Activities I could see what an inspiring impact the drumming program has had. Many students demonstrated their understanding of Kofi’s drumming patterns, while others chose to discover their own language. It was fantastic to return to school and get back on the drums together. We are uplifted by the communal drumming experience, and we look forward to Kofi and Appiah’s return to continue our Drumming and Dance Program.
‘The drum is like it is saying something to me’: Alice from Yr 1 responded to the Seesaw Drumming Activity with an improvisation. It was a conversation. There were ‘sound sentences’: phrases of pattern which explored different textures and combinations of sounds. There were pauses and moments of reflection, and responses which were like musical answers to her drumming dialogue. I watched Alice’s response several times and each time, more was revealed to me about how Alice’s drumming stimulated so much in her mind. It was wonderful to see this creative approach in many of the Seesaw responses.
Other students sent videos of their ‘Drumming Song’, or responses showing a joyous therapeutic explosion of drumming energy! Students are making connections to the language of sound patterns, and how drumming patterns are derived from the rhythms of our speech. This helps the students to anchor their patterns with strength and clarity, and to then successfully achieve the ‘buzz’ of layering the patterns simultaneously. I am always impressed by the student’s resourcefulness when finding a ‘drum’ at home. Buckets, laundry tubs, boxes, tea tins, a surfboard, table tops, mixing bowls, and traditional drums from other cultures became instruments for exploration.
Since returning to school we have been practising our drumming and dance routines, and we look forward to continuing our workshops with Kofi and Appiah. The Preps have also enjoyed playing on some home made djembe which the Yr 3/4s of 2015 made!
Instrumental Music has continued with online lessons. The students and their teachers have been fantastic, and have really made the best out this learning context. I’m impressed at the way students have supported each other by demonstrating and sharing their skills. We are so fortunate to continue with the IM program through these COVID times, and the IM teachers and I thank Richard for his tech support and supervision. As soon as we are able to welcome our IM teachers back to school, we will set a new date for our, now twice postponed, IM concert.
This week we were to have started with the before school choir ‘Bright Morning Stars’. Please look out for Compass announcements about this singing class/choir with Emily Hayes. Students from Yrs 2 – 6 are invited to participate, and the choir will rehearse on Wednesday mornings from 8:20 – 8:50am. As soon as visitors are allowed back on site, and students are no longer required to be in separated Neighbourhood bubbles, we will be meeting to sing!
Thank you to all the families for supporting the students through their online learning and Instrumental Music lessons. We look forward to sharing our music learning with you when we can come together as a community. Meanwhile, take care everyone.