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Technology. Musical Instruments. The Big Picture. This is a 4 lesson unit. By the end you will have designed and made your own musical instrument, and used it in a performance.

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Technology l.jpg

Technology

Musical Instruments


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The Big Picture

This is a 4 lesson unit. By the end you will have designed and made your own musical instrument, and used it in a performance.

I will assess your work by looking at the quality of your planning and making. I am especially looking at the way you sequence your ‘how to make it’ planning and how you decide what materials to make it out of. Your planning needs to be clear enough for anyone to pick up and understand.


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Lesson 1IDEASInvestigative, Disassembly and Evaluative Activities

Today you will investigate a musical

instrument so you can learn about

assembly (how it’s made) and how it

works. You will present your learning to

your group and possibly your class at

the end of the lesson.


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  • Look at the musical instruments on your table.

  • Choose one to examine with your partner.

  • Discuss with your partner each of the following questions.

  • Take brief notes on your whiteboards of your ideas. You will present your ideas to the other pairs on your table at the end of your discussion time.


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Your questions

A. What materials were used to make the instrument? What does that tell you about locally available materials?

B. Look at the structure of the instrument:

  • Is it solid or hollow?

  • Does it have a box, arm, stem, board?

  • What parts have to be strong?

  • What part makes the noise?

  • How do you make different notes?

    C. What country was it made in? When do you think it was played and why?


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Recording your work

  • Take a full page in your Technology books. Title (‘Musical Instruments IDEAS’) and date your page. UNDERLINE WITH YOUR RULER.

  • You need to record your notes into information which you can share and return to for ideas and inspiration at a later date. Before you start think about layout, diagrams, labelling and key information. You may use highlighters in the text, for example.


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What have your learnt today?

  • Think, pair and share with your talk partner.

  • Turn to the partners on your table. Use a magic microphone. Choose a chairperson, and a secretary who takes notes. Share again.

  • I will pick four from the floor to share with the whole class four important things you have learnt today.

    We need two observers to walk around the classroom taking notes on:

    • participation (joining in)

    • cooperation (sticking to the rules)

    • great thinking.

      The observers will award one point to each of the

      people they observe doing well in this task at the end.


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Technology Homework 1

This is a research homework. You will take notes from books, magazines and Internet sources. You will need your homework for next week’s lesson.

Find out about a handmade, traditional musical instrument from anywhere in the world.

  • What country was it made in?

  • How does your instrument work? (How does it make the sound it produces?)

  • What is your instrument used for, e.g. celebrations, religious ceremonies?

  • Identify the different parts, materials used and methods of assembly used in the instruments. Present this information in a labelled diagram.

    GO FOR GOLD! We will award a small but glorious prize for the most amazing and peculiar traditionally made instrument researched.

    Dear Parents and Carers: this is part technology, part literacy and part a music homework. Your child has had a lesson doing all of the above in class, only using real instruments as their primary source of information. We are teaching your child to use brief notes when researching information, which are then turned into text with diagrams that anyone can read and understand. One side of A4 will be fine. The layout of the piece is up to you and your child – we gave a lot of freedom on this in class because this encourages independence and ownership of learning. Thanks hugely for your support – we hope you have fun – your Y5 teachers.

    Tip: Google these sites. They give lots of information and let you sample the sounds the instruments make as well:

  • Indian musical instruments – A comprehensive website on all musical instruments

  • Chico musical encyclopaedia

  • Welcome - Staying in tune: Traditions and Musical instruments of the Francophonie

  • Sri Lankan music instrument sounds

  • BBC – music – echoes of Africa


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Lesson 2TechnologyMusical Instruments

Have your homework piece in front of you. Who has an unusual and peculiar instrument researched? We will take hands up and see which the class thinks is the winner.

You are going to think, pair and share the following questions. You will then discuss these questions with the rest of your table. Finally, we will swap two people from each group, so that everyone’s ideas can be shared. We need two observers, like the last time. Here are your questions:

  • Is it important that traditional methods of making musical instruments continue?

  • What materials are used in different cultures to make musical instruments? Why do they vary?

  • People are prepared to pay high prices for hand-made instruments. Why do you think this is?


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Shaking, Scraping, Hitting and Plucking

In today’s lesson you will learn to:

  • understand that different types of sounds can be made using different techniques eg shaking, scraping, hitting and plucking

  • understand that the working characteristics of materials affect the sound made

  • assemble materials in temporary ways

  • understand how different materials can be reinforced for specific purposes


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Ideas

  • shakers (margarine pots with rice, gravel or sand)

  • scrapers (plastic bottles with ridges, dowel rods, sandpaper)

  • drums (food containers, biscuit tins, material to stretch over the top of the containers)

  • string instruments (food containers, elastic bands, string).


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What to do

Look at the materials on your tables. Your mission is to investigate as many different ways as possible of making a musical instrument out of these materials.

By the end of this lesson you will have produced a page in your technology book of annotated diagramsshowingand explaining how the materials can create sound once assembled.

Use the previous slide, especially the title, as a guide for your labels. Look at the next slide for your targets.

SAFETY FIRST: elastic bands can sting when flicked. Be very careful – a fully stretched band can be nasty if it is released. Keep a careful eye and hold of everything you handle. Careless behaviour will lead to time out.


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What have your learnt?

  • Swap books with your desk partner. Does the work show scraping, shaking, hitting and plucking? Give 5 points for each of these shown and clearly labelled.

  • Did one particular instrument that you made appeal to you more than any other? How could you improve this basic design? Would you use different materials? Would you change the size? How would you apply a finish to your design?

    In the next lesson you will use today’s learning

    to start your own instrument design.


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Lesson 3TechnologyMusical Instruments

The task is to design and make a musical instrument for __________eg sound effects for a puppet play.

  • Discuss your ideas in pairs and your group. What sound are we going to make? How loud? What could we use?

  • Put your ideas on paper in a way which others will understand. List materials and other resources, and to set out a proposed sequence of work. What materials work well? What could you use? How much will you need? How will you make this?

    I will be using your planning as an assessment piece. I want to know if you can sequence your planned activities, refer back to your investigations, and communicate this clearly so anyone can understand this from your written piece. Evaluation


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Things to Consider

  • Refer back to your investigations - compare how sounds can be made using everyday items.

  • Think of easier ways of making your instrument eg reducing the number of notes it makes, making it a different shape.

  • The instruments must be made to a high standard. Accuracy of making is very important to creating the right sounds. How well is it working? What could you do to make it better? You may need to make changes to your design as you work – this is a good thing so don’t get worried about sticking to your design too closely.


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… and finally …

We will give you a photocopy of your design to take home. This is a prize winning homework.

  • Everyone who brings in an instrument made at home will earn a whole star.

  • The winners (first, second and third) will be judged on musical tone, quality of make, and finish.

  • We will use your instruments in our next lesson to produce the sound effects for your group’s performance. This is when the judging will take place.


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Technology Homework 2

This is a prize winning homework. You will earn a star for bringing the homework in for next week’s lesson.

You each have a copy of your planning for your instrument. If you were absent, you have a friend’s planning.

Use your plan to make an instrument to use to accompany your group’s performance of ____________________.

Your instrument will be judged onmusical tone, quality of make, and finish.

Dear Parents and Carers: Your child has produced a plan which should show a clear sequence of making, and should say what materials s/he thinks s/he needs. The plan should be closely referred to, but as with all designs, alterations will need to be made as you go. This evaluative process is a good thing, and to be encouraged. What we don’t want is for the design to be abandoned while you end up making the whole thing all on your own! We have sent this project home because many children can become enthralled with this kind of work, and the stop/start nature of a timetabled school week - having to put everything away just as you get finally going – doesn’t help anyone produce their best work.

Thanks, as ever, hugely for your support.

Your Y5 teachers.


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TechnologyLesson 4Musical Instruments

This is your last lesson in this unit. By the end of this lesson you will have performed with your instrument, and completed an evaluation for it.

First, you will make a short presentation of your instrument to everyone in your group. Your group may ask you up to three questions, and make (polite) recommendations for improvements. This will help you complete your work evaluation.

You will then plan your performance, so everyone’s instrument is used to its best effect.

I will judge the winner of the competition during this performance.

Good luck!


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Evaluation

  • Sequencing of actions (did I complete the work in the order I had intended, did my planning sequence help?):

    __________________________________________________

    __________________________________________________

    2. Clarity of planning (could I read my planning when I got home, or did I keep having to explain it to my helpers?):

    __________________________________________________

    __________________________________________________

    3.``Quality of design (did it work? Were my materials the best for the job?):

    ___________________________________________________

    ___________________________________________________

    4. Quality of finish (does it look good and stay together when I use it?):

    ___________________________________________________

    ___________________________________________________

    Lesson 3 Technology Musical Instruments


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