Scholarly article on topic 'Methodological Approaches Specific to Rhythmical Music Education in the Romanian Primary School'

Methodological Approaches Specific to Rhythmical Music Education in the Romanian Primary School Academic research paper on "Economics and business"

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Abstract of research paper on Economics and business, author of scientific article — Mihaela Modoran

Abstract Increasing the quality, value and efficiency of the teacher's activity in his/her difficult mission of forming rhythmical music abilities depends on his/her option to a certain didactic strategy which combines the most efficient didactic methods and techniques. In accordance with the new methodical trends which emphasize the pupils’ thinking activation in the teaching- learning process in order to consciously acquire the musical rhythm and develop rhythmical abilities with which they can operate in an active and indepedent way in singing, listening and creation, the present study aims to a pedagogic model in rhythmical music education in the stage of musical prenotation which develops active and participative didactic strategies. Furthermore, these strategies put pupils in a close relationship with the folklore music and, last but not least, they intensify pupils’ creative abilities.

Academic research paper on topic "Methodological Approaches Specific to Rhythmical Music Education in the Romanian Primary School"

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Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 116 (2014) 3160 - 3164

5th World Conference on Educational Sciences - WCES 2013

Methodological approaches specific to rhythmical music education

in the Romanian primary school

Mihaela Modoran *

"Ovidius" University, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, 124 Mamaia Blv., Constanta 900527, Romania

Abstract

Increasing the quality, value and efficiency of the teacher's activity in his/her difficult mission of forming rhythmical music abilities depends on his/her option to a certain didactic strategy which combines the most efficient didactic methods and techniques. In accordance with the new methodical trends which emphasize the pupils' thinking activation in the teaching-learning process in order to consciously acquire the musical rhythm and develop rhythmical abilities with which they can operate in an active and indepedent way in singing, listening and creation, the present study aims to a pedagogic model in rhythmical music education in the stage of musical prenotation which develops active and participative didactic strategies. Furthermore, these strategies put pupils in a close relationship with the folklore music and, last but not least, they intensify pupils' creative abilities.

© 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Education and Research Center. Keywords: Rhytmical musical education, aims, contents, methodical approaches, musical folklore;

1. Introduction

In accordance with the new methodical trends which emphasize the pupils' thinking activation in the teaching-learning process in order to consciously acquire the musical rhythm and develop rhythmical abilities with which they can operate in an active and indepedent way in singing, listening and creation, the present study aims to a pedagogic model in rhythmical music education in the stage of musical prenotation which develops active and participative didactic strategies. Furthermore, these strategies put pupils in a close contact with the folklore music and, last but not least, they intensify pupils' creative abilities.

2. Methodological approaches of the musical rhythm in the stage of musical prenotation

The rhythmical musical education starts before the notes education, being an important stage preparing the conscious acknowledgment of the notes (sounds), from the start point of the idea the music is formed from these sound elements, existing even outside the graphic symbols, or the little child senses first of all, the sounds not their symbols, because he cannot get their meaning. Finally, the child has to understand that musical signs are just a way

* Corresponding name: Mihaela Modoran Tel.: + 040724570675 E-mail address: prof_modoran_mihaela@yahoo.com

1877-0428 © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Education and Research Center. doi:10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.01.726

he does not understand - not the single one- to express the musical language, he has to learn it quite before the reading-writing, he has to understand the musical graphics are necessary to write down a sound reality that appears before the thinking, before the feeling of the children (Motora, Ionescu, A. 1978).

2.1. The length of the musical sounds

The first theme included in the musical education schedule for the first form pupils, in the primary cycle, at the musical rhythm chapter, is the length of the musical sounds. This subject is developed along 2-3 lessons. The teacher activity has to start always by establishing some operational targets to be realized in the field of the children capability to face the requests of the rhythm details to be reached to the end of the learning session as:

- to make the length differences of the sounds inside a given example;

- to reproduce sounds having different lengths;

- to sing short and long sounds;

- to produce sounds with different musical toys;

- to represent graphic the length of the sounds by different horizontal lines;

- to recognize the length of the sounds;

- to execute correctly the length of the sounds of the exercises, games and child songs;

- to make the difference in some contexts of different long or short sounds.

The teacher can use a various scale of musical didactic ways as exercises, rhythmical games, songs, auditions, drums and musical games, tables, etc. The best one is considered to be the rhythmic musical game for the little school child. The musical games as The hen and the chicken or The wind and the rain help a lot the perception and the reproduction of the teacher long and short sounds sung by the children, helped by onomatopoeia. In order the kids intuit faster the longer sounds is recommended the teacher emphasize this aspect, when presenting the song. The little ones will be asked to reproduce the examples and to comment the differences between the sounds, mostly for the sound length point of view.

In order to write down the length of the sounds we may use graphic representation of horizontal lines of different lengths, a manner used by E.Willems, and in Romania by G. Breazul, M.Ursu and Ana Motora Ionescu. This way will allow us to continue to realize some efficient of rhythm reading using the syllable ta, as well as some recognizing exercises of the sounds length following the dictation. The rhythmic dictation can be used as a game: Draw the line. According to the subject, the teacher will attack songs containing short and long sounds (minims and eights), asking the pupils to identify them naming the text syllable corresponding to them. As a support of a correct intonation of the musical lengths a table can be realized, representing proportional drawings by the song words (lines). Some musical auditions can be added also, containing sounds of different length as a car horn, a clockwork sound, a train sound, etc. Or even musical instruments as the trumpet, the pipe, the kids can produce long or short sounds by themselves. In order to form a rhythmical capability to memorize and reproduce rhythmical formulas combining different length sounds some exercises are to be suggested as simple games (Sing like me! Drum like me!). The rhythmic structures can be created by the teacher himself or even by the children. For the dynamics of the lesson the rhythmic formulas will be marked with the help of an instrument or some musical toy.

During the second class, the schedule involves the teaching of longer periods, one time, half a time, two times, comparing them to the musical times. The targets to be followed in this case could be shaped this way:

- to mark phrases and simultaneously mark the time;

- to nominate steps in time at any syllable;

- to intonate sounds lasting for one time, half a time and two times;

- to correctly represent in graphic manner the learned lengths;

- to nominate the lengths with the help of the rhythmic syllables;

- to reed rhythmically, simultaneously making the times, some exercises combining the lengths of the learning;

- to recognize after dictation, the lengths of the musical sounds;

- to identify in songs and auditions, the lengths of different musical pieces they already learned;

- to represent graphically the compound elements of the signs of the musical notation (points and the sticks).

The time length is the one normally imposed in children musical rhythm hearing and feeling, an action they instinctively do in their games. Owing to this considerations, the Romanian musical pedagogy represented by Breazul G. Brailoiu C., Comisel E. (Vasile V., 2004) starts to teach the length of one time and a quarter time.

The algorithm of the teaching the musical lengths involve the following steps:

- The teacher gets the pupils into some rhythmical games based on the onomatopoeia, as the „voice of the instruments";

- The teacher will demonstrate the execution of the onomatopoeia making in the same time the musical times. It is necessary to show the pupils the marking the rhythm has equal time breaks as the clockwork at a chronometer. The process of the onomatopoeia intonation in the same time with the movement in time will allow the child to make a step ahead in understanding the main elements of the rhythmical language. The movement: slapping hands, slapping slowly the desk, the rhythmical walk, the conducting movements, the drums and musical toys rhythms are together an important support in observing and fixing the lasting elements of the musical sounds;

- The pupils will reproduce the teacher's demonstration and will get involved in the game development intonating onomatopoeia and the simultaneous movements simulating the singing movements for every instrument, rhythmicizing, marking the times with the percussion instruments and the musical toys.

- The pupils will be asked to nominate how many times every sound has lasted. After the intonation of the onomatopoeia and the marking of the times every pupil will easily understand the lasting of every syllable in times.

- This very moment, the teacher will expose the technical contents linked to the new notion, I mean the musical sound lasting an arm movement (step) has a length of a time - the definition will be made over a half time and two times;

- Measuring exercises in times will be made for different lengths. Comparing them with the times the pupils will specify the length of the sounds the teacher or the colleagues produced by the voice or the instrument;

- In order to support the reading of the rhythmic exercises and some recognizing exercises (rhythmically dictated) the teacher will demonstrate by writing the graphical representations of the learned lengths. Some graphical representation of lengths of musical school teacher John Curwen can be used (it means lines placed by the letters d, r, m, f, s, l, t - consonant taken from the notes of Otto Gibelius) (Csire, I. 1998) having a great advantage of facilitating the following learning of the musical notation. In the second year some other graphical elements can be introduced signifying the notation of the lengths having a musical calligraphy character. Exercises of graphic representation of other composition elements can also be made representing them along the staff lines;

- The pupils will realize reading rhythmical exercises tusing the ta syllable and marking the time, exercises combining first lengths of a time and half a time and finally all the lengths they learned;

- In order to evaluate the developing level of the rhythmical skills some rhythmical dictation will be made in order to recognize and identify some lengths inside musical fragments extracted out from songs. The rhythmical oral dictations can be made only in the case of the using of rhythmical syllables (the quick stepping fourth, two eights, slow half). These are conventional terms created for a didactical purpose in order to make possible the perception, the concretizing and the expressing of the different lengths of the pre-notation. The main advantage is they permit to do oral dictations. I personally consider some terms as the ones recommended by Ana Motora Ionescu (1978), the above mentioned terms can create confusions as they are movement terms and I would suggest to mostly use the rhythmic syllable ta as it can also be used in the following period, of the musical notation of the rhythmic reading activities;

- The learned rhythmic elements will be valued in the songs where the rhythm is successively combining the learned lengths;

- The activity of teaching-learning of the musical lengths will end by the identifying of the sound lengths of a learned song fragment -or in writing, naming the corresponding syllables the pupils recognize.

The formative-educational values of the musical folklore of the children in this stage of the musical pre- notation, mostly in the formative activity of the rhythmical skills are very special, very important, decisive I may say. I could show a few reason to support my suggestion:

- the musical folklore of the children is very suitable to the small children specific features;

- they are all authentic;

- they reflect their spiritual specific universe;

- the children folklore is acting in a deep accordance with their sincere ways to act as children;

- by all these creations the child satisfies his needs of action and movement (Oprea, Ghe., Agache, L., 1995);

The children's musical folklore also acts as a stimulating factor of the creating imagination. The material contents

of the lines the child shouts permit the acquisition of a rhythmical experience very rich and positively necessary in order to discover and realize some values of the notes and breaks, or some other various rhythmical formulas. From methodical order reasons it could be useful to use some series whose unity is overlaps with the syllable, to use the fourth, which permit to shout (scan) the folkloric verse simultaneously with the one time movement materialized by the steps of walking or clapping hands. The eight unit series will be followed seven syllables verses which can be valued in order to identify the breaks (Zoicas, Toma, L., 1987). The little children will find out the lacking of a measure and its replacing with a pause if they will scan the verse in the same time with the time marking. The variety of the lengths in a lot of rhythmic combinations creates possibilities as they be used as rhythmical reading exercises, or developing the musical memory or as recognizing exercises (rhythmical dictation).

In this field, the song and the audition are methods of greatest importance. More than that, the using of other specific methods helps to improve the efficiency level of the teaching - learning activity involving a lot more the children. These ones are the musical instruments, the musical toys which bring some special variety in interpreting and improve the pleasure of the kids to sing. They could be played even by the teacher during the lessons, or by the children. Using them, the pupils can create various rhythmic accompaniments- in formulas the teacher can decide, or even created by the kids. The marking of the rhythm can be done by slapping hands, or slapping the desk, intuitively conducted, by rhythmic walking or dancing steps. Or maybe movement the text of the song suggests.

In case of rhythmizing activities of a given song , the objectives are as following ones:

- to sing the song and mark the times in the same time;

- to mark only the accentuated (stressed) time;

- to mark alternatively and simultaneously (two groups) the times succession and the stressed time appearance;

- to scan the verses (lines) of the song marking every syllable;

- to sing the song marking the rhythmical formulas;

- to mark alternatively and simultaneously (three groups) the times succession and the stressed time appearance in the same time with the vocal interpretation;

- to rhythmize the song with body movements;

2.2. The musical breaks

According to the concentric character of the schedule contents, the musical pauses (breaks) are taught in every class of the first years. The operational objectives established for the first and second years are as follows:

- to intuit the emergence of the pause in the song;

- to notice the breaks as moments of silence in the music, an interruption of the singing;

- to identify the emergence of the breaks inside a song or an audition;

- to mark the length of every break (slapping hands, drums or other instruments;

- to pay attention to the break in the song;

- to mark the breaks of the song (or musical game) he sings;

As a general term the break can be understood as very easily by the pupils if it is seen as a moment of silence in the song. But to respect it during the singing in the rhythmic structure of the songs is difficult as the children cannot stop singing, finding it difficult to slap hands or the instrument.

In his didactical action, the teacher can sing himself musical creations containing breaks eventually asking the children to notice if he sang continuous or using breaks. After this demonstration the pupils will observe the silent moments and will mark those slapping hands or the desk or the drums. The teacher will be able after this moment to transmit the theoretic notion combining the idea of the silence moments with the idea of the break. The teacher will pay a special attention when the children will repeat his interpretation. This way, the teacher will demonstrate comparing the interpretations with and without breaks as the children to observe the expression effect of the break in singing.

2.3. The rhythmic creativity in the pre-notation stage

The rhythmical creation exercises can be realised in the form of rhythmical improvisations helping with some percussion instruments, musical toys slapping hands or rhythmical movements suggested by the texts of the songs. One can rhythmically accompany by body movements or using improvisation of the verses (lines) of the song. In this case some children folklore formulas could be used. These exercises of creation are suggested to be "clothed" as improvisation rhythm-melody the children create in both plans. The start point could be a small text in rhymes, a refrain of a song that could be modified or a pretext under a game form - The voice of the instruments - during which, the pupils can simulate the play different musical instruments (rhythmic movements) elaborating some onomatopoeias suggesting the sounds.

3. Conclusions

I consider an active conscious and creative learning of the musical rhythm can be successful only if respects the following methodical requests:

- the rhythmic contents to be learned in successive steps in connection with the previous elements the children learned;

- the theory knowledge to be transmitted in a direct contact with the musical creation;

- the children have to be asked to actively participate in singing the fragments of the melodies, this way involving themselves in a more active manner. They will identify and analyze easier the contents;

- they have to be involved in an analyzing process of the musical material presented and asked to discover new rhythmical element and to identify the main features;

- in order to fix the notions the teacher has to offer the necessary theoretical explanations. This intervention has to be short, concise, and essential, not to be transformed in pure theory. It is necessary to continuously alternate the theoretic moments with the practical ones helping by the voice or the instrument, the musical audition;

- just because the music has a strong practical character, the theoretic elements and explanations have to be transformed in practice, exercise auditions, didactic musical games. The musical creations a teacher uses have to answer the accessibility criteria in accordance with the theoretical content, its aesthetic and educational value taking into account that the finality of the musical education is to develop the aesthetic sense of the pupils;

- in a following stage, the contents have to be valued by the children using some musical rhythmical creations exercises or even rhythm - melody associations.

References

Csire, I. (1998). Musical education from the creatuvity perspective. Bucure§ti: Musical University.

Motora, Ionescu, A. (1978). Handbook for teaching music in classes I-IV. Bucure§ti: E.D.P.

Oprea, Ghe., Agapie, L. (1995). Romanian folklore music. Bucure§ti: Ed. Funda^iei Romania Mare.

Vasile, V. (2004). The musical educational methothodics. Bucure§ti: Ed. Muzicala.

Zoica§, & Toma, L. (1987). The pedagogy of the music and the folklore values. Bucure§ti: Ed. Muzicala.