Aural Skills for your Elementary Musicians
The AuralBook series of ipad apps are visually asthetic to students as well as very easy to navigate through and understand. It captures attention and interests with its various activities. Students are able to hear instructions from a very clear human voice. They are guided in every aspect of the app so that they always know what to do, what to listen for, and what to sing. The app is a fun tool for students to use and motivates them to keep working through the app to better their skills. They don't even realize they are learning! With the AuralBook apps, students are practicing skills they have already learned and are working on improving their abilities. They are able to analyze their performance to understand what they have done correctly or incorrectly.
2 Direct Instruction
Skills that are used within the AuralBook apps are skills that have been previously taught in music classes beginning in Kindergarten. Students have already learned about what a beat is and how to keep a beat with a song. Students have learned about singing and echoing pitches that are either sung or played on a piano. Students have learned about high and low pitches and how to tell their differences.
The lesson will begin with reviewing these skills through listening to pitches on the piano, echo singing from the teacher, and clapping different rhythms and beats for different music pieces.
3 Guided Practice
With the ipad projected on the smartboard, students will be given a walk-through of the app for their grade level and how to use it. They will learn how to use the app and how to navigate through it.
4 Independent Practice
Students will break into four groups. Each group will have one ipad and be assigned a specific activity within the app (Sing, Note, Feature, Clap).
Within their group, students will take turns participating in their activity. Students who are not participating are to listen and analyze the student's performance. Once the student has completed their portion of the activity, the group will have a short discussion on the student's ability to complete the activity. Constructive criticism must be applied. Any comments are not to be hurtful but must be helpful. Once all students within a group have had a chance to participate in their specific activity, they will be assigned a different activity to complete.
Please note that the apps are very sound sensitive and use microphones. Voices should be kept as quite as possible during discussions so that other groups are not distrubed. The app has to be able to hear the singer/clapper clearly in order to properly assess the performer's ability.
After all groups have completed the four activities within the app, students will be brought back to their normal seats. As a class, we will discuss the various parts of the app, what students feel they need to work on, what they feel they excell on, and ways to improve their abilities on their own. Students will be informed that the apps can be downloaded on their own iPads and iPhones at home with parent permission.