We’re debuting this care package on 4/13/2020 – families are at home, and many schools have already been closed for weeks. Many young students still want to learn, and it’s simply impossible to recreate a classroom environment at home. However, that’s okay! Not all learning happens in a classroom. We’ve created some items specifically for this project and pulled together a few of our favorite resources from other parts of the internet.
We’re hoping that these open-ended explorations take a little pressure off of caregivers, let kids learn through play, and give learners the freedom to spend more time digging into their favorite parts. And we’re hoping adults can get in on the joy of noise-making.
For our debut release, we’ll be concentrating on tinkering and experimentation. In May, we’ll be adding more material to include math, science, and musical collaboration. We can’t wait to see what you build, and we encourage you to share all and any of it on this week’s forums!
We’re offering printable versions of our activities – we hope these can be useful for teachers and other community educators who are printing and distributing activity packets to support their students. Learning happens best in a community, so we hope you’ll encourage students to share and reflect on what they’re doing and making, in the way that works best for them:
- Call a friend
- Take their instrument on a walk
- Play sounds together with other people at home.
- Record video or audio of what they’re doing
- Create or add to a journal or notebook
The website and video prompts should be just enough to get students started on exploring music – even if you don’t have a printer. We hope you can help your learner join a wider community of makers by sharing your work online – some options for distance learners:
- Share with online classes already in session
- Sign up to post pictures, links, and comments in our online forum – https://fullsteam.mit.edu/forums/forum/week-4/
- Share pictures, videos, and stories with friends and family on social media – feel free to tag us!
Make sure you scroll to the bottom for additional grade levels.
Welcome to Making Music and Sounds Part 1 with the MIT Edgerton Center!
These materials are written for caregivers and distance educators of children grades K-2. We hope these make it easier to guide learners.
- Listen for new sounds
- Make some noise
- Think: What is sound? What is music?
- Build a simple instrument
- Create an original musical contraption
A quick “note” – the group that collaborated on this Music & Sound project consists not only of teachers, engineers and Makers – but also musicians! We are singers, drummers, guitarists, and finger-snappers, and wanted to share our love of finding and making music with you and the children with whom you share our project. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
Discover sounds around you with your K-2 learners!
What does your world sound like? MIT Instructor Elizabeth Cavicchi has a challenge for curious listeners:
Here’s a story by Elizabeth’s youngest ever student, using some of her favorite sounds:
Can you use sounds to help you tell a story of your own? What sounds will you decide to use?
|With your learner, spend some time just listening for any sounds, and talk about what you hear!|
|Your Own Sound Story|
|Ask your learner to make up a story that uses some of the sounds that they heard, or add extra sounds into the story.|
|What sounds can you hear? Let’s listen, and write about or draw some of them!|
Find ways to interact with objects in your surroundings to make music!
|Make Some Noise|
|Taking turns, one person chooses an object from the pile and uses it to make a sound!|
|What’s that sound?|
|Take turns identifying mystery sounds.|
|Using an object from your object pile, make a sound, and then have others take turns trying to imitate the sound with their voice or body.|
|Take turns using your object to sound out a rhythmic pattern, and then have others repeat the sound using their own noisemaker.|
|Each player chooses an object from the object pile. Together, play a rhythm – try to create a pattern that includes each player doing something a little different!|
Sound, Music, and Instruments: Info for adults, with discussion questions.
There are just a few basic ideas young learners need to know to understand sound and music. For each idea, we’re including a little extra information for caretakers and teachers, and a few questions you can ask your learner to help them.
|What is sound?|
|What is music exactly?|
First, you be the judge. Listen to each clip in this playlist for at least 30 seconds, and decide: is it music? Why or why not?
|What do the experts say?|
Next, have a look at what a panel of experts thinks – who do you agree with?
Let’s build an instrument!
Here are a few ideas for creating simple instruments from things you might already have around the house. We hope you’ll share what you build!
|DIY Instrument Examples|
|DIY Instruments: Rubber Band Instruments!|
|How can you use everyday materials and rubber bands to make an instrument?|
|Have a cardboard tube or toilet paper roll? Make it buzz!|
|Can a bottle be an instrument?|
What other musical contraptions could you make?
Encourage your learner to invent and build something new! Help your learner through the steps in the document – you can ask the questions below to give them some extra guidance. We’ve included some space for drawing and writing.
Now it’s time to invent something of your own! Just follow these steps: