Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Music Creation for the Classroom - Some compiled resources

So much of my blog has been about creativity games, but I realized this week music has shown up now and then.  It has always been a huge part of my personal life and recently I have seen how it can motivate students in school.

When it comes to infusing passion into a lesson, not much can compare to the effect music has on many students.  Some of those who are hardest to reach are also deeply interested in music or musically inclined.

Technology has made it easier that ever for anyone to create something along the lines of a song or music video.

Here are a few thoughts and resources that I have posted previously.

The basics:
  • This post sums up a method I use to create original songs and videos in about three hours at the most.
  • The main idea behind these projects is to encourage learners to make something that involves passion and creative expression, publish it and learn from it so they can do better next time.  
  • It's easy to spend a fortune on good equipment, but in all my efforts with recording I keep it simple.  Even a mediocre musician like me can get a lot of mileage out of free online resources, Audacity for recording and Gsnap for pitch correction.  You'll probably need a mic and headphones too, depending on how you plan to perform and record.
  • GarageBand for the iPad is amazing.  For several months I thought of it as just a tool for sketching song ideas.  Lately I have been using it to record short songs like some of those shown below.  I use the iRig Mic Cast microphone and iRig guitar interface with it for recording.
From other posts:
  • An overall plan for creating music in the classroom - This was written in the summer when I had some untested ideas.  It still serves as the outline for the projects I have done with students.
  • My latest music video with students - Two middle school students wrote this song.  I helped them record it and I edited the video using mostly video and pictures taken under their direction.
  • My example of a math music video - When I told students about my ideas, some were afraid to sing or perform on video.  I made this video as an example to encourage them to take the step.
  • Scientific Method Rap - This is one example from my first effort to assign a music video project.  The post is the best example here of what worked from start to finish in the classroom.  I did about eight hours of work on this after the students finished, just to see what was possible and how much work it would take.  
  • Another rap - This example also came out of the class project above, but without my additional editing.  
  • Kevin Honeycutt - Since I first came across Kevin's conference session in 2011 he has been an inspiration to me.  I love how he inspires students to be creative and get their ideas out there.
  • Music Video for Tech PD - This is a song we had some fun with for a PD session.  I was encouraging teachers to put some passion in their work and to do something new.  This song was a result.  It also serves as an example of what can be done using just the iPad for recording.

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