Singing, Strumming and Song Writing
In order to foster creative collaboration we have the students team up to write original songs together as evidenced in the video below.
Below is a link to a short video showing a DoSo Elementary class at the W.O.Smith School in Nashville. In addition to the grade school children you will see a couple of adults and college students who are teachers-in-training. At the bottom of this page is the YouTube video that is the resource for learning The Lion Sleeps Tonight.
A DoSo® Elementary program (for grades 2 – 6) provides an opportunity to play and sing popular music from diverse cultures. Developmental psychologists have empirical proof that playing an instrument before the age of 14 provides life-long cognitive advantages.
David Mills has borrowed concepts from Suzuki, Orff, Dalcroze and Kodaly, and he has incorporated improvisation techniques found in American jazz, blues and rock, as well as Hindustani classical music.
The 3-string Loog Guitar (tuned GBE) is analogous to the Orff diatonic xylophone, that is, it is a vehicle for teaching music fundamentals. The objective is that students entering middle school will be musically literate and capable of improvisation. They will be well versed in:
- playing and reading rhythms including complex syncopation
- singing solfège – moveable “do” including variations, such as, “me” for a minor 3rd
- the ability to improvise
- understanding the Cycle of 5ths
- understanding diatonic harmony
- the ability to transpose songs
- the knowledge of natural modes with the ability to sing them against a do-so drone
- the ability to scan poetry and write lyrics
- understanding song structures with the ability to create original songs
- understanding Dimensions in Music, Art and Physics – a correlation that is the very definition of STEAM
Students who study a traditional orchestral instrument discover that the DoSo Elementary experience enhances their ability to analyze, memorize and personalize a classical composition.
With all the recent emphasis on improving math and science education, the arts are often short-changed. Yet, all agree that innovation is essential for economic growth. A child in a DoSo Elementary program learns musicianship, collaborative social skills, and creative thinking. All these skills can be applied to a higher level of music study or to any other discipline in arts and science.
For children learning to read and speak English, our sing-along videos are very helpful. In the video below you will see the resource the students use to learn The Lion Sleeps Tonight. The song, written by Solomon Linda, originally comes from South Africa with the title Mbube meaning “The Lion” in Zulu.
In the following videos you will see how we incorporated dance into a DoSo Elementary program. You will also see music ed students from local colleges.