CHILDREN’S DAY EDUCATION PACK Llangollen International

Eisteddfod 2013
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Thank you for choosing to visit the Llangollen International Eisteddfod’s Children’s
Day this year. We are very excited to welcome you. We hope that what we have
planned will be a memorable and exciting experience full of fun and surprises.
Within this pack you will find some ideas to inspire work within the classroom. In
addition to the music, it will inspire children who are maybe studying the solar
system, writing space adventures or joining us on the day dressed up in sci-fi
costumes they have made.
We hope that you find this pack useful and enjoy your discovery on the day.
Our Aims and Objections
To promote…….
Global Citizenship
Sustainable development
Knowledge and Understanding of the World (FSP)
Creative development (FSP)
Music skills (KS2)
Geography skills (KS2)
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Peace Message Concert
We come in peace! As part of International Children’s Day we present the famous and historic
Peace Message concerts by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
The orchestra will perform a collection of pieces based on discovery and the highlight is The
Mission of SPM-1 by Gareth Glyn.
The Mission of SPM-1 is designed to introduce
young children to the orchestra and its
instruments, the rudiments of melody and
rhythm, and many other elements of musical
expression in the most exciting way imaginable –
a journey through space in the first ever Starship
Powered by Music – SPM-1, captained by
Starfleet Commander - Major Skale.
In this fantasy, the spaceship is the concert hall,
and its power is provided by the orchestra – here
known as the Central Orchestral Interstellar
Propulsion Unit – COIPU. The various ‚drivers‛
of COIPU are the different orchestral families,
and each module of those families is represented
by the individual instruments of the orchestra.
The ‚crew‛ of SPM-1 are the children in the
audience; they will be welcomed by Major Skale
as highly-trained crew and vital to the success of
the mission – and indeed for the best experience
it is worth preparing the children beforehand.
This is an interactive work – at various points, the ‚crew‛ will be asked to respond to prompts
requiring them to repeat rhythmic or melodic patterns (in the guise of satisfying the demands of
the ‚Galactic Sector Police‛); to produce sounds in various ways (e.g. humming, whistling, singing
and clapping); and to sing, with the orchestra, a melody which has been specially designed to
include every note of the diatonic scale. In the context of Mission of SPM-1, this is the
Intergalactic Contact Code.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Warm Up Exercises
Start with the class standing or sitting in a circle. This means all the children can see
and hear each other. However, some of these exercises can take place with the class
sitting at desks if you have limited space.
1) Name and Rhythm Warm Up
Step One: Clap the rhythm: ‘clap, clap, rest’ to a count of four.
Step two: In the rest, the person whose turn it is shouts their name, in the next
rest everyone shouts it back to them.
Step Three: This carries on round the circle until everyone has had a go.
Aim: Ensemble rhythm and ‘multi-tasking’ (doing more than one thing at once.)
2) Pass a Clap
Step One: With the class sitting in a circle, each person claps once, until
everyone in turn has had a go.
Step two: Try and do this as quickly as possible, and make it a real team
Step three: Time it and set a challenge to get quicker, to see how well the class
is responding and concentrating.
Variations: Once the first clap has been established try setting up two claps
around the group (one clockwise and one anticlockwise).
Take a steady clap round the circle to a count of 4. Only every other person claps.
(This works well with an odd number of people in the class.)
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
3) Pass a sound
Step One: Instead of clapping, send a different kind of sound around the class
e.g. a ‘shh’ noise made with the mouth.
Step Two: Ask the children to make a physical movement with the sound, to
go with it. (The movement can really help to ‘describe’ the sound.)
Step Three: As the sound and movement is passed, you can ask the children
to vary the sound and the movement as it goes along.
Variation: Get the class to imagine they are passing a flexible and changing object
around the room. As the object changes shape so do the sounds it makes.
Aim: To gain a creative sense of musical ensemble; by keeping in time, by responding
and listening to each other’s ideas, and by performing solo within the whole group.
4) Keep With It
Step One: The leader or ‘conductor’ gets the children to clap or stamp exactly
in time with him/her. This can only be done if his/her movements are really
clear and easy to follow. (You’re not trying to catch them out.)
Step Two: Once the class is in time with you, you can vary the sounds
that the class makes and vary the signs that are needed to cue them. For
instance, a quiet, murmuring sound can be cued with wiggling fingers on both
hands held close together.
Step Three: As the ‘conductor’s’ hands move apart the murmuring gets
louder, as they come together, it gets quieter.
Step Four: Once the class has got the hang of this, you can invite a member of
the class to be the ‘conductor’.
Aim: To gain a sense of ensemble by paying close attention to a leader. Also, for some
children to gain a sense of musical responsibility by becoming the leader.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
5) Don’t clap this one back
The leader claps the simple rhythm, which fits to the words: ‚Don’t clap thisone back‛. (You can think of it as ‘slow, slow, quick-quick slow’ to help pick
up the rhythm.)
Step One: As the class learns the rhythm, get them to say, ‚Don’t clap this-one
back‛ at the same time.
Step Two: Once mastered, this becomes the rhythm that is not to be clapped
Step Three: The leader claps all sorts of rhythms, lasting 4 beats or
thereabouts, and the class clap them straight back.
Step Four: If they clap ‚Don’t clap this-one back‛ they are out.
6) Heads To Toes
Step One: The leader asks the class to follow him/her as s/he goes along.
Step two: S/he starts by tapping her head 8 times, shoulders 8 times, knees 8
times, toes 8 times – all in time.
Step three: The next time round it’s 4 times on each, then 2 then 1.
Step four: Repeat, but do it faster.
Step five: Carry on until you run out of breathe!
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
 Repeat the exercise, but this time do the count on 7,5,3,1 – odd numbers instead
of even.
 Ask the class which they found harder and why.
Aim: This exercise, (apart from being fun and keeping you fit) concentrates the mind
on rhythm and a simple number sequence at the same time.
All the exercises are good as a way in to musical improvisation and
composition, and to get children in the right frame of mind for
making music together. Above all, they’re great for teaching how
to keep in time.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Exercises To Teach The ICC
The Intergalactic Contact Code uses every note of the major scale and uses Tonic sol fa
to describe the notes. You do not need to be Julie Andrews to teach children about
Do Ray Me!
Teaching Tonic sol-fa is simply a question of building up the children’s knowledge
note by note. For this, Tonic sol-fa hand signals can also be used to help reaffirm the
notes that they are singing.
For the purposes of these exercises the examples will work in the key of C, so the
only notes you need are C D E F G A B C.
The notes and hand signals of the major scale are as follows:
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step One – Singing
Begin by repeatedly singing each of these examples. (If you are not confident
enough to just sing the examples have an instrument close at hand to help you.)
With each example the children should echo what you have sung and played.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step One – Instruments
Use unpitched percussion to keep a steady beat in 3 time. Possibly with a deeper or
louder instrument on beat one to emphasise the first beat.
Introduce each of the following parts on the instruments using C D E G A and
high C
By introducing each of these layers the Tonic sol-fa notes are re-established and it creates a
simple piece for the children to play. I would suggest that each part is brought in one at a
time until all are playing and then reverse the sequence to finish.
Experiments can be done as to which instrument should go first and which should finish
last. The last part is improvised with the only restriction being the choice of notes.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step Two – Singing
Before moving on, sing through the first bar of the Intergalactic contact code.
Now sing through the following phrases
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step Two – Instruments
Now on instruments put together the following parts.
Use unpitched percussion to keep in 3 time, experiment with different combinations
of percussion to provide this beat e.g. drum and cymbal, triangle and shaker, wood
block and cabassa.
If you felt more adventurous you could try player two on a different starting note which
would mean player two was playing in an alternative key.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step Three – Singing
Before moving on sing through the first two bars of the Intergalactic Contact Code
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
With singing and hand gestures now try the following
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step Three – Instruments
Now with the instruments put the following parts together
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Step Four – Singing
Sing the whole Intergalactic Contact Code with hand signals.
Have unpitched percussion to keep it in time, with one bar introduction from the
percussion before each entry, sing through a total of four times.
Step Four – Instruments
Now try playing the Intergalactic Contact Code on instruments, again with unpitched
percussion to keep the 3 time pulse.
At the end of these exercises the Intergalactic contact code should be
familiar to everyone. Make sure that everyone has had a go at both
keeping the pulse and playing the melody.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
The Intergalactic contact code will be harmonised by the orchestra in a different way
each time it appears, but they will be strong harmonies which will help the children.
The example below provides a piano part for the code (which includes the bar’s rest
between repetitions of the tune) and includes a simple diatonic harmonisation (not
used in the orchestral version) which might be useful for classroom practice:
Additional Ideas
 Design and make a space ship
 Design a flag to represent International Music, Song and Dance.
 Produce your own graphic score.
Write a space adventure meeting Alien’s from different countries with
different talents.
Children’s Day Education Pack 2013
Reading List
The magic school bus lost in the solar system
Joanna Cole (KS2)
Aliens love underpants
Claire Freedman
The story of astronomy & space
Louie Stowell & Peter Allen
(6 - 11yrs)
Listed below are recommended websites to support with the learning of the solar
system and the orchestra.
(This leads to a further insight via video clips into sections from the orchestra
such as brass, woodwind, strings and percussion.)