Simply stated, I’m obsessed with fall. Around this time every year, I pull out my favorite coat and boots, and start wanting pumpkin-flavored treats and warm cider. For our download this month, I wanted to give your student an opportunity to relish the delights of fall as well. As we near November, the days are shorter, the rain clouds linger, and the leaves turn golden. It’s a very special, beautiful time of year and it tends to bring a certain vibe, a feeling quite different from the excitement of summer.
I’m not saying October necessitates bringing on anything negative, but it’s definitely more moody. I wondered if your students could pick up on this too by listening to some moody music and gathering inspiration to be a Kid Composer. I want them to practice listening to the world around them as well. For inspiration, play some fall themed music, like the autumn section from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, or the soundtrack from the movie It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Better yet, listen to both and compare them. And then ask your student to describe familiar fall sounds – things like whistling wind or hooting owls.
Once they have some ideas, have them sit at the piano and come up with a simple song using one or both hands. You might help them find some moody notes or a slower rhythm for their song. You might ask them how fall makes them feel, and then ask them to find notes that sound like their feelings. I know, this is some abstract stuff, but I don’t want to underestimate our students. Music is a language, and kids speak it well. They can practice writing the notes of their song on the staff enclosed. Enjoy this activity with some warm cider, or another favorite fall treat to make things extra special.
When we connect song, nature, and even emotion, kids begin to see how important and how powerful music can be in their lives. Then, piano can become a tool and an art form they can use to process experiences and express themselves their whole life long. These are my larger goals.
If you’re a member of Busy Kids Do Piano, you’ll be able to access this Music Challenge Monthly activity in the “Printables and Worksheets” section of the website.