Prep 2 Blog

Greetings, Prep 2 Families,

Thank you for another great week of music-making! The children are well on their way to learning their repertoire for the Spring performances. We are happy and impressed by their progress and enthusiasm, and each class is such an action-packed and fun-filled hour that I am often amazed by how quickly it passes – so much music to make, and so little time!

***IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING THE THURSDAY PREP 2 CLASSES NEXT WEEK***

Upcoming Rehearsal Venue Changes
On Thursday, March 24 Prep 1 and Prep 2  will meet at a different venue – this is because we have to vacate our usual space for Maundy Thursday events at FCC.  Please go to the following venue:
Thursday, Prep 1 and Prep 2: Los Altos United Methodist Church, 655 Magdalena Ave, Los Altos – park in the large parking lot at the rear, and come to classrooms 8 and 9.

(please note that Intermediate Singers will meet at a different location. If you have an Intermediate singer, please go to First United Methodist Church in Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave, Palo Alto – sign in in the parking lot.)

From Katie

  • We again welcomed one another with the fun partner dance, “Me and You,” which the kids really enjoyed, allowing them to greet several new partners in the room and show their awesome skills in highly rhythmic clapping, patting, and dancing!
  • The children took turns leading our vocal warm-ups in lots of exciting ways, including  Scarf Sounds, St. Patrick’s Day Vocal Explorations, Tuning Tree, and Bubbles the Fish!
  • We sight-read a “mystery rhythm,” and discovered it was our new canon from last week, Rooster in the Stew. The children reviewed their movements for each phrase, and did a really excellent job singing this canon in 2-part harmony!
  • The children reviewed some concepts from their homework on the xylophones; we sang and identified the pitches “Doh-Mi-Sol-Lah” in the staff in C major, switching between singing the solfege, and the true note names. The children then took turns singing these pitches in different melodic patterns, which everyone then played on the instruments. Next week, we will introduce “Reh” into this tonal pattern, which will then make up the pentatonic scale. The children will also go home with a sheet about the pentatonic scale next week!
  • We then reviewed our newest concert song, Kokoleoko, which is about a rooster from Liberia! The children reviewed the main rhythm on the maracas, and then learned the returning chorus theme in 2-part harmony. Please listen to this song at home, and have your child sing along, and site when the song splits into two parts!
  • We also reviewed the rhythm and solfege for Manx Lullaby – and reviewed the important dynamics needed to make this a true lullaby. The children then stood and sang the whole song from memory! There are some sections which still need review, particularly the B section, which starts “Oh fold thy wings, and seek thy nest now.” Please review with your child at home this week.
  • We had a blast playing El Capitan, and a new game from African-American origins, Draw Me a Bucket of Water  – if you have four people at home, have your child teach you this song and game!
  • In honor of St. Patrick’s Day (and our upcoming concert) we reviewed Hi Ho The Ratlin’ Bog. This is a true favorite for the kids  – be sure to review, listen to, and sing at home!
  • Please make sure you read The Scoop sent by Cantabile every 2 weeks on Fridays. It has all kinds of important information for our families, and I don’t want you to miss anything you need to know.

From Emily (Thursday 3:45):

This week was exciting because I was seeing some real progress both in singing and musicianship for all of the students.  I heard everyone sing on their own and in duets, and each child is showing a little bit more confidence.

We stared our class by doing rhythmic ostinati for our first song, Dinah.  Each child then sang their name to me in Hickety Tickety Bumble Bee,  and we did our bumble bee warm up exercise to practice using all the parts of our voices.  You can ask your children to sing it for you—they can probably do it on their own.

We practiced watching a conductor while reviewing the song Scotland’s Burning.  We are learning this fun canon, and soon we will start singing it as a round. This song also has some great body movements to it, so it got us moving.

We reviewed our melody names for Sol, Mi, La and Do while playing Ring Around the Rosy faster and faster.  We derived the melody for that song from listening, then the children followed my pointing to our “tone ladder.” It looks like this:  

The children then learned a completely new song by following my lead on the tone ladder.  We then wrote down all the solfege on the board, and the children transcribed it to the staff.  The kids then derived the rhythm of the songs as well.

Keeping up with their new rhythm skills, the children read the rhythms from the score of Manx Lullaby.  They discovered that it contains a new rhythm, the 1/2 note, and that a 1/2 note contains 2 beats.  We reviewed the 2 sections of the song, and then the children sang it in groups of 2, so I could hear them again.  Please have your children listen to the songs that we will be singing for our concerts.  It really helps them get to know the music.  I’ll include the links again at the end of this post.

We then played Here Comes the Bluebird, and ended the class by keeping the beat on shaky eggs to Ratlin’ Bog. 

Here are the links for our songs:

Great Big Seahttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoRV9dsx5Zk

Manx Lullaby:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMJQYM8QOPI

Ratlin’ Boghttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMX5jXFJNvw (this one is new this week!)

I look forward to seeing everyone next week!

From Jazmine (5:00 Thursday):
  • We warmed up our voices with a special St. Patrick’s Day Vocal Explorations (they LOVED these!)
    the Elevator song, Let’s Put the Rooster in the Stew, and  Bubbles the Fish!
  • We worked on learning various pitch patterns with the use of the Solfege Ladder!
  • In honor of St. Patrick’s Day (and our upcoming concert) we reviewed Hi Ho The Ratlin’ Bog. This is a true favorite for the kids  – be sure to review, listen to, and sing at home!
  • We also reviewed the rhythm and solfege for Manx Lullaby – and reviewed the important dynamics needed to make this a true lullaby. The children then stood and sang the whole song from memory! There are some sections which still need review, particularly the B section, which starts “Oh fold thy wings, and seek thy nest now.” Please review with your child at home this week!
  • We worked on A Great Big Sea, which has a lot of fun text! Continue listening and reviewing at home!
  • We then reviewed our newest concert song, Kokoleoko, which is about a rooster from Liberia! The children learned the chorus and tracked their way through the whole score! Please listen to this song at home, and have your child sing along, and site when the song splits into two parts!
  • Please make sure you read The Scoop sent by Cantabile every 2 weeks on Fridays. It has all kinds of important information for our families, and I don’t want you to miss anything you need to know.

Have a great weekend!

Katie, Emily, and Jazmine

March 18, 2016

Week of March 18th/ Class # 6

Greetings, Prep 2 Families, Thank you for another great week of music-making! The children are well on their way to learning their repertoire for the Spring performances. We are happy and impressed by their progress and enthusiasm, and each class is such an action-packed and fun-filled hour that I am often amazed by how quickly it passes – so much […]
March 12, 2016

Week of March 11/ Class # 5

Greetings, Prep 2 Families, Thank you for another great week of music-making! Emily, Jazmine, and I are all having so much fun getting to know your kids, and are so impressed by their musical progress and enthusiasm for singing. Please continue to use the information below to reinforce practice and vocal development at home. From Katie (Monday and Tuesday) and Jazmine (5:00 […]
March 5, 2016

Week of March 4th/ Class # 4

Greetings, Prep 2 Families, Thank you for another great week of music-making! Emily, Jazmine, and I are all having so much fun getting to know your kids, and are so impressed by their musical progress and enthusiasm for singing. Please continue to use the information below to reinforce practice and vocal development at home. From Katie (Monday and Tuesday) and Jazmine (5:00 […]
February 27, 2016

Week of February 26th/ Class # 3

Greetings, Prep 2 Families, Thank you for another great week of music-making! The children are doing a great job learning their songs for the spring concert, and we are having so much fun dancing, playing and learning so many important musical concepts! The terms is off to a great start! Please continue to use the information below to reinforce practice […]
February 13, 2016

Week of February 12th/ Class # 2

Greetings, Prep 2 Families! Thank you for another lovely week of singing and music-making in Prep 2! It is great to see so many smiling children, singing their hearts out, and making friends in a musically-enriching environment. We all feel very fortunate to be teaching such enthusiastic children! Please remember that next week we are off for Ski Week, and […]
February 6, 2016

Week of February 5th/ Class # 1

Greetings, Prep 2 Families! We had such a lovely first week of Prep 2 Classes here at Cantabile! I have reports of much singing, dancing, and learning, and it was a pleasure to see so many smiling faces, making music together! Please read the updates below, one from Jazmine (Thursday 5:00 Prep 2), and Katie (Monday and Tuesday Prep 2), and […]
November 13, 2015

Week of November 13th/ Class # 10

Greetings Prep 2 Families, Many thanks from Jazmine and myself for another great week of rehearsing in Prep 2 Chorus! Our December recital is getting closer, and you are all doing a lovely job preparing for it. Trivia Question: In honor of our fun new dance from Antarctica, The Penguin Dance, how many species of penguins are there in the world? Please note: All Prep 1 and 2 classes […]
November 6, 2015

Week of Nov 6th/ Class # 9

Greetings Prep 2 Families, Many thanks from Jazmine and myself for another great week of rehearsing in Prep 2 Chorus! Our December recital is getting closer, and you are all doing a lovely job preparing for it. Trivia Question: This week, we learned how to say the word “peace,” in a number of different languages. Do you remember all the words, and their countries of origin? See below […]