At the SMC/Orff Conference, Nov. 2006
Morning Review by Lynn Dreidger-Enns
Jeff and Randy KNOW children! They know real teachers and real classrooms… the morning was full of little quotes and tidbits that have stayed with me… bringing a smile…
”There is one person in charge of every classroom – sometimes
it’s the teacher.”
After a lovely little colorful, piece around the theme of ‘weather’, teachers in the workshop captured a moment of magic… crystal clear points on a canvas of quiet… Jeff and Randy gently teased...
“instruments are designed to sound best when played gently –
unfortunately this is not natural to children.”
Along with this piece on weather, we were reminded to look at the child’s language in the context of the arts. By having students read the poem aloud to the teacher we are able to hear their level of reading fluency and comprehension. Homonyms such as weather and whether are used within the poem. The poem’s rhythm is natural to the text and so the child draws meaning from what they are reading and feels the Language.
“The school should be a child’s museum – every class has art”
The workshop was full of good teaching practices. They introduced strong visual aids from their new teacher resource package which incorporates body percussion charts, symbols, a wall xylophone with pocket slots to place the notes of the pentatonic scale being used, a pocket solfege wall chart, a snazzy valentine letter for the valentine song, and explicit instructions on how to make exquisite six pointed snowflakes to accompany the piece on snowflakes.
Randy and Jeff use soft voices to teach with … encouraging students to listen carefully. Everything about their style allows opportunities for children to internalize the music…
“Say it, Do it, Think it.”
Afternoon Review by Barbara Flaten & Lisa Machnaik
We were thrilled to be 2 of 62 participants who attendeed Randy and Jeff’s presentation at the SMC/Orff Conference. Our day ended with thunderous applause and cheers for these two fine music specialists.
The afternoon started with the season of Spring, as we were introduced to a creative way of doing household chores! Between washing windows, sweeping floors, shaking sheets, and scrubbing toilets, we even taught Randy & Jeff that dog poop freezes in Saskatchewan winters! An innovative way of teaching ta’s and titi’s with the use of the book, “Otto” using the words, “poor otto,” as ta’s and titi’s. We were thoroughly entertained by Sophia’s re-telling of the story and Randy’s tale of April’s cross-eyed titi’s. Next, we explored singing and moving in 2/4 and 8-part rounds, to the song “Sally Go Round the Sun.” It was amazing how such a simple song was turned into such a creative experience with 8 concentric circles. The song, “Don’t Let the Wind” was appropriate for any season. The instrumental accompaniment was gorgeous; the song and weather reports hilarious! We were then presented with a more challenging and beautiful song, “Red are Strawberries.” We were all mesmerized by how quickly and easily we were put into 2 circles with our arms weaved.
Our Orff exploration of seasons came to an end with a modified hand jive using visuals and rote method. Later, we applied it to the song, “Summer Nights.” It was a great way to end an inspiring day!
On the next page, you will find an activity from our day with Randy & Jeff, to use and enjoy!
Spring Fling 2007
Review by Joel Swaan
On Saturday, May 12, the Saskatchewan Orff Chapter co-sponsored a full day presentation titled “Exploring the Global Soundscape” by Dr. Hal Kacanek, the Didjeri-Dude. Dr. Hal, as he is affectionately called, was in town for the “Crossing Boundaries: Investigating the Nexus of the Arts” conference, being held that week at the University of Regina.
Dr. Hal brings with him a world of musical experiences. Literally. As president of Sounds We Make, LLC, he has been to many countries to explore how music is meaningful to other cultures. Although there are many similarities, Dr. Hal has concluded that while we call music “the universal language,” there are many things that are peculiar to the cultures within which they originate that can sound foreign to our “western” ear – just as our music sounds equally foreign to them. His discussion with us that day was based on music and sound serving multiple purposes within each culture:
Sound as a warning
Sound as signal
Sound which produces feeling
Sound which supports story line
Sound as symbol, and
Sound as a socializer.
Using conch shell, pot lids (we met “Sam & Lid-ia”), Balinese gamelan, swimming pool vacuum cleaner hose, aboriginal drum, showerhose-a-phonium, zamphonia, didgeridoo, pan pipe, penny whistle, rattles, and a variety of other instruments, Dr. Hal explored with us the meanings of music, and its purpose within cultures around the world.
Did You Know that:
You can compose an entire pitched instrument out of second-hand pot-lids?
You can spin vacuum cleaner hose and hear several pitches in the chord structure based on how fast you spin it?
A brass-instrument mouthpiece attached to hoses and funnels will make an instrument that you can play like a bugle?
Rather than blowing over a pop bottle opening, you can also use a straw?
A pop bottle and unpopped popcorn just need a handle to make it an instrument?
We discussed the science of music – how the conch shell is parallel to the cochlea in the inner ear – and what the wavelengths of notes look like – by observing a skipping rope being turned in octave variations.
We discussed to purpose of using masks in theatre – “a good mask is one that makes you want to act it out”. With drama being part of a good Orff curriculum this was a good addition to hear that day.
Most importantly, we learned about using sound “responsibly.” Sound makes us feel, therefore it is our responsibility to use sound in a way that produces good/appropriate feelings in others.
Our afternoon was spent making our own pan pipes, rattles, and didgeridoos. Instructions for the pan pipes, didgeridoos, penny whistle, and Native American cowhorn shaker can be found at his website,
Denise Morestad, in particular, worked extremely hard to make this event happen including spending the entire week with Dr. Hal as his personal chauffeur and concierge. Many thanks to Denise and those who helped her. As Orff is a global methodology, and one that we believe in very strongly, it was good to add a world music perspective to the Orff philosophy.
Level 1 Course, Summer 2006
During the summer of 2006, Marlene Hinz and Janie Fries instructed our most recent Level 1 course in Regina. Here are some photos of the class, including their dance presentations and the recorder concert at the Wine and Cheese, hosted by Barbara Flaten.
Enjoy the reviews from students of this course!
When I reflect on my ORFF Level One experience I think of the Chinese proverb “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime; teach a man to teach others to fish, feed a generation.” In just two short weeks, I feel that my ideas surrounding music and movement have been sculpted from a rigid viewpoint to one that is free and open minded. This approach to learning provides educators with an enjoyable and non-intimidating environment in which to portray music and movement to their students. In my opinion, if any music or movement educator is to take one course in their entire life I suggest that they invest in this course! The ORFF approach to learning is an innovative and fresh perspective that will not only allow educators to enjoy music and movement more, but also their students. Once you have had a taste of the ORFF approach to music and movement you will never want to teach or learn in any other way!
Submitted by Carlene Schwartz
Looking Back on Level 1 ORFF
When I registered for the summer '06 Orff class, I was optimistic, a
little nervous, and excited. I had heard nothing but positive feedback--from teachers, fellow students--on the Orff approach to music education. I was still unsure of what exactly to expect, but I had heard rumours of
busy-on-your-toes kind of days, dancing, lots of songs and material, and of course, the often overlooked but noble instrument, the recorder.
Fortunately, Orff provided everything I could have expected, and more. Although the actual hours of class were long, time seemed to fly by in a blur of rhythmic ostinato and NPP. The class experience provided me with more beneficial and quality resources than I could have asked for. It made me excited and proud (once more) to be moving into a career as a music and arts educator. Orff renewed my faith in learning by doing; in integration of many different styles and levels of arts/music. I was blown away by the level of work that students can produce in a relatively short period of time.
Orff is a style of teaching that I would be proud to utilize in my classroom. I would like to thank our great instructors for passing on such valuable and fun knowledge. I'm very much looking forward to Level 2 (and whatever type of outdoor concerts we find ourselves in....) next year.
Submitted by Meagan Blackwell
I am a third year Music Education student who took the summer session of the Orff Level One course. This particular course was an elective for me, but in the end, it turned out to be one of the most valuable courses I have taken in my studies, so far. The things that I found most useful and beneficial were the resources and ideas that our teachers gave us. Not only did they give us titles of great books to use in the classroom, but they also gave us many songs, dances, and other materials that I know I will find useful when teaching.
In addition, I found the dance part of this class to be helpful and enjoyable. The dances that we learned were all exceptionally fun and would work well in a classroom. Throughout this portion of the class I kept thinking to myself, if I am having this much fun learning these dances, think about how much fun the students would have.
In conclusion, Orff Level One was an overall wonderful experience. I am very glad that I decided to take this course because I learned a great deal during the ten days. I would recommend this class to anyone pursuing a career in elementary arts education.
Submitted by Jennifer Yim
Mark your calendar…..
Children’s Day 2008
Tembu and the Lion
Featuring patrick, richard and cheryl
Call from children’s groups
September 27, 2008
Saskatchewan Orff Chapter Executive Meeting
Wilfred Hunt School
May 11, 2007
Present:, Barbara Flaten, Cathy Graham, Shauna Matiko, Shelly Mooney, Michelle Phair, Kathy Reid, Joel Swaan
Regrets: Lisa Machnaik, Lynne Driedger-Enns, Janie Fries, Denise Morstad
1) ADOPTION OF MINUTES
? Motion: Cathy moved that the minutes from the executive meeting held March 9, 2007be adopted as presented. Joel seconded the motion. Carried.
2) BUSINESS ARISING FROM MINUTES
? Fall Classic Workshop is set for Saturday, September 22nd in Regina at Wilfred Hunt School. Debra Giebelhaus-Maloney will be our presenter. There is a problem in that she is also booked for the Sask. Music Conference in Reginain November. Kathy and/or Shelly will talk to her and clarify things.
? ACTION: Denise will send out a hard copy of all 2007/2008 events in the fall.
? Joel volunteered to be the Sask.rep. for the national Orff power point.
? ACTION: Joel will ask Cathy Bayley who the intended audience is and then we can proceed with sending photos and information.
? Timelines are STILL needed for merchandise, publicity, vice-president, past-president, facilities host, snack planning committee. Please complete and send to Shelly asap.
? Re: poll results, we will know after the next newsletter is sent out.
? Cathy will put names in a hat for a door prize of a coupon for the Fall Classic Workshop to be drawn tomorrow morning.
President’s Report – Shelly
? Level II Orff will be offered at the University of Regina from August 7 to 17thwith Janie Fries and Marlene Hinz. Kathy will send a cheque for $250 to Marlene as an honorarium for her contribution as a sessional instructor.
? Fall Classic Workshop in September, Lynne has booked a representative from St. John’sMusic to sell resources. ACTION: Lynne, is it going to be Bruce Grant for sure? Could he repair instruments while he’s here? ACTION: Denise, please mention the St. John’sattendance in our promotional material. ACTION: Shelly will write Rachel Saxberg in Calgary about possibly funding Debra G-M’s travel to Reginafor our Fall Workshop. Several of our members have traveled to Calgary for Orff Level classes.
? There was a discussion of executive members’ terms. Shelly agreed to let her name stand for president for another term. So did Joel and Shauna. Barbara will be stepping down. Shelly will ask Lynne if she is willing to stay on as past president. We need to hear from Lisa. Kathy will be stepping down in a year and suggested that she have a protege and live in the same city as the president.
? The National Orff Conference, Encore 2008, will be held in Edmontonfrom April 24 – 27. ACTION: Shelly will ask Debra G-M for financial assistance to send a Sask. Orff executive member(s) to attend. It would be good to be able to financially support a Saskatchewan Orff ensemble to perform in Edmonton. We will be able to determine that assistance in September.
? Shelly booked Catherine West for the Fall Classic Workshop on September 27, 2008 in Saskatoon.
? Until someone on the executive is able to record our workshops with a digital video camera, we may have to transfer VHS tapes onto DVDs. ACTION: Barbara will pursue this.
? Shelly would like assistance when it comes to deciding who should receive the Carole Petrie scholarship.
? Treasurer’s Report – Kathy
Kathy presented the Children’s Day financial statement. Cathy was able to reduce the fee for the school (yippee!). Revised statement attached.
Kathy also presented her treasurer’s report (attached).
MOTION: Kathy moved that her Treasurer’s report be adopted as read. Joel seconded the motion. Carried.
ACTION: Shelly will remind Kathy of the deadline for the SMEA regional workshop grant.
? Membership Report – Cathy
As of March 25th, we have 58 members.
We have 7 registrations for tomorrow’s workshop.
? Newsletter Report
Lisa had trouble getting the last newsletter in PDF format but now has the glitches worked out, thanks to a computer-savvy friend. We went through the latest newsletter draft and revised it, including the following additions: scholarship application, info on Fall workshops in 2007 and 2008, 2008Children’s Day, Encore 2008 (and request for performing groups), and reviews of the 2007 Children’s Day and tomorrow’s workshop, poll. We should also include a reminder to access the Carl Orff website (password is Carmina). ACTION: Lisa will revise the newsletter and send it out via email by May 31st.
? Publicity Report
ACTION: Denise will send promotional material to all the appropriate school division curriculum leaders in Saskatchewan.
? Merchandise Report – Michelle
We will give Hal a Music, Fun & Song book tomorrow as a thank you gift.
We will continue to brainstorm ideas for future merchandise.
For bigger items (eg. xylophone holders), we could offer a reduced price if we do a bulk order through the organization with members pre-ordering.
? Archives Report – Shauna
Shauna is excited about meeting with archivist, Lila Henderson, to learn more about archives.
? Advocacy Report – Joel
ACTION: Joel will talk to Graeme at SMEA about updating our info on their website.
ACTION: Joel will try to convince the University of Saskatchewan to host a PD day for elementary music teachers in a similar format to what the band teachers receive.
? University Liaisons Report – Shauna & Joel (& Denise)
Joel contacted the U. of S.re: an Orff Level I course. The answer was “no”. Level I courses are being offered in Calgary and Winnipeg.
ACTION: Shauna will give a membership in September to the U. of S. elementary music ed student rep if he/she registers for the workshop.
ACTION: Denise will give a membership in September to a deserving student if he/she registers for the workshop.
4) NEW BUSINESS
? The wine & cheese reception will be held on August 16th in Regina. Michelle will host it. Barbara & Michelle will arrange the food and beverages.
6) JOB CONFIRMATION FOR SPRING FLING, May 12, 2007 (Regina)
? Registration: Cathy, Kathy
? Facility: Barbara, Lisa, Denise
? Snack Breaks: Lisa
? Pictures: Shauna
? Video: Shelly
? Merchandise: Michelle
? Evaluation Forms: Denise
? Reviews: Lisa
? Advocacy: Joel
7) JOB CONFIRMATION FOR FALL WORKSHOP 2007 (Regina)
? Registration: Kathy, Cathy
? Facility: Barbara, Lisa (lots of instruments needed)
? Snack Breaks: Janie, Michelle
? Pictures: Shauna
? Video: Shelly
? Merchandise: Michelle
? Evaluation Forms: Denise
? Reviews: Lynne
? Advocacy: Joel
8) NEXT MEETING
? Friday, September 21, 2007
? location: Wilfred Hunt School
? MOTION: Cathy moved that the meeting be adjourned.