Submitted by Connie Herbon, Iowa
Idea posted March 14, 2003
I thought this could be a good way to get my 2nds involved in understanding step/skip/repeat in melodies. We use the solfa ladder, and all have bell sets, but getting the whole body involved does a great job of engaging the whole class in understanding the concept. (I travel to rooms, so a large floor staff is not an option at this time.)
Choose five or more students to stand in a row facing the class. Each should have a chair behind him/her. Students must already understand that moving from left to right will take them higher and right to left will take them lower if you want to use "up/down" directions. (My end students hold cue cards showing upward/downward.)
Warm-up: Choose another student to select names demonstrating step, skip, and repeat. Extend to include direction and multiple steps, etc., as needed for what you want students to understand. Selected names sit down so class can see spaces.
After all have had turns selecting steps, skips, and repeats, teacher poses a problem. (Sample line: Joe, Lisa, Bob, Tina, Alex) Sample problem: "Beginning with Joe, step up 2, step down 1, skip to top, step down 3. Who am I thinking about?" (Lisa) Continue problems as time and interest allow and students gain skill in thinking through the directions to arrive at an answer.
Once the procedure is established, this can be extended into a game with teams and/or scores, if desired. It can also be used as a "sponge activity" to fill a few extra minutes at the end of a class period.
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