One of the things that I’ve enjoyed learning since teaching the Music For Young Children (MYC) program is the composing component. It’s quite an eye opening experience even for myself as I had never been exposed to composing when I was learning piano as a young child. MYC has made it very easy to introduce composing to young children and I have really enjoyed the process of using art to explore ways to develop a simple motive.
I marvel at the students’ creativity, even that of the youngest students in the studio. I started by telling students that they were going to write their music (some jaws dropped while others beamed with excitement!). For our youngest students, we started with rhythm and critter pieces to construct their first melody in 4 beats of rhythm. Composing activities were bite sized and spanned over 4 weeks to complete. We focused on a composing technique each week and students were surprised how easy it was to tweak their little motive to expand into a bigger idea that makes “their composition”. They soon realized that with the “tricks”, they could never be out of ideas :) By the end, it was interesting that students had easily accomplished 4 measures of music and the nicest part was how effortless and fun they thought the process was.
This summer will be busy but fun with video projects of the student compositions. Meanwhile, here’s a short video of a student’s composition that I’m thrilled to share, Kate wrote a song about “The rabbit” :)