Tag Archives: music

Bring The Noise

15 Nov

Everyone likes music to some degree. Regardless of the genre, music connects to people in some way. In society much of our culture is laced with music and itself has become a culture. As an artistic person I often find ways to connect with others in a creative matter, and the easiest connection to make with people is music. It is because of these reasons that I have found that I think music could be very beneficial in education.

Music can house creativity, it can spark interest, it can begin physical activity, and it can create happiness. Music can do a lot of things, and yet in my schooling experience I have found it is rarely used. My experience of music in elementary school was singing choral music, which no one found entertaining. My experience in highschool was even less. People hear music everywhere, so why can’t they hear it in the classroom?

There are obviously countless online resources for music, which I can not wait to explore, but the one website I have emmerced myself in recently has been Groove Shark. Not only has this program allowed me to explore music for my personal use, but it has given me countless ideas for use in the classroom.

The website is fairly simple. You sign up, and then you can listen to music. Simple as that sounds, the uses can be endless. The website keeps track of all the music you listen to, so there you won’t ever forget a song. You can add songs to a library and make playlists. The set up of the website is very easy to use, and the amount of music I was able to search was impressive. Many off scene Canadian artists showed up, because they themselves had uploaded music. There is another point, you can upload music to the site. Because it is a website, you can access your account from any internet source, and even from your phone. The most important thing I found was that you can make playlists.

This is where I started thinking a lot. Over the summer I had a job at the daycare, and for at least an hour every day I danced with the children. I had over ten cd’s that I took to work and we would play them and dance to them. It was spectacular, the kids totally responded to it, and I had a very wonderful time working there. I found that my management with the children increased because they were just waiting for me to play music for them, and their attention was focused to me because they liked to listen to what I had to say. We had a lot of fun dancing, and they always requested songs, which led me to making more and more cd’s. This is where grooveshark could come in handy! I could easily just bring my laptop and set the playlists up for the kids ahead of time, or make the playlists as we went. Of course I would have to make sure they were appropriate, but I am well versed in music so I doubt the children could catch me off guard. I can easily hook my laptop up to a speaker system, and next summer I plan on using this at the daycare. I am very excited.

A very interesting thing about Grooveshark is that you can share your playlists or subscribe to playlists. If there are educators using this program I would love to subscribe to their playlists and get as much music for the classroom as possible! Although I have many personal playlists on my account, I have made playlists for the music I used over the summer at the daycare. My first playlist includes my drama music. For this music I had the kids dance like certain things that connected with the music. This worked wonders with the kids, because they were guided into what they could dance like but at the same time free to express themselves in whatever way they wanted. For example the most popular song I used was Walk the Dinosaur By Queen Latifah, where they had to dance like dinosaurs. I also used the song Popcorn and had them start as popcorn kernals and had them work up to popping around like popcorn.

I have also made a playlist with music that I could use just to dance to! I figure if I can use this in any way in a classroom, I will, and I will continue to add music to my playlists. If you want to check out the music I have collected you can check out my Playlists.

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One blog a year sounds good to me?

3 Mar

I guess i don’t blog… LIE. I facebook my little heart out, daily, and update my status constantly! That is my own form of blog… take for instance my status today::

“Street art doesn’t belong to anyone, you can’t buy it you can’t sell it, it’s not one persons in particular, its ours, nobody has more access to it than anyone else, we are all equal, it is living, changing, growing, you don’t know where its coming from and you don’t know who’s doing it, it’s not going to last for ever but it is for every one, you just have to have the courage to go out there and do it…”

This is not my quote, but rather a collection of the most powerful quotes from a short film I watched today called To Be Seen By Alice Arnold. I am currently working on a project about what was originally graffiti but has turned into street art as a whole. I am hoping to create an entire art unit about this street art phenomenon. I find street art to be absolutely beautiful, and the meaning behind it even more so. The quote about sums up the most beautiful words I listened to expressed about street art today, and have now created my view on what street art is. I don’t know if anyone will actually read this, but I guess if anyone has any ideas for incorporating street art into a lesson I would love to hear them and add them to my list (which is already becoming huge).

Also… Twitter…. It occupies my time some nights for a while. I have made my Twitter into something specific, and that is of music. Rather than updating what I am doing, I am only updating what I am listening to. Not only that, but I am posting the most important lyrics I hear in the song as well as the song itself. It is my music blog. I used to do it on facebook, but then people got annoyed with the constant updates so I switched it to twitter, where it doesn’t matter as much because I don’t have anybody on twitter anyways. It feels weird updating my twitter, knowing not many people are actually reading it, but at the same time it seems just as important to me. If someone were to read it, and read all of the songs (which are never repeated) they would basically know a lot about who I am, in a non creepy way. I don’t care if people read it, just putting it on the internet lets me express myself. Also, I have a very large collection of music, and by posting the lyrics it makes me really listen to each song, and eventually I would love to have all of my music on my twitter!

Continuing on with art, I have found lately that I look at everything from an aesthetic view-point, and the more I continue on with school the more I see the importance of aesthetics in school, and basically life. A huge impact on this has been the Olympics. The Olympics have basically have had the biggest impact on me I think in my entire life. I have never been so proud to be Canadian. I watched every single event, and knew the schedule off the top of my head. The opening ceremonies truly displayed the creativity that comes out of Canada and literally brought me to tears. The medals, I think, are one of the most beautiful creations ever. I watched the youtube video about the medals and it amazes me. The art that went into the medals, just by the curves to match our country side, and the patterns on the back is amazing. I think it is also truly amazing that all of the medals are different pieces of the art work and you need the entire set of medals to create the whole picture. Enough about the olympics, it has been my life for the past two weeks.

Another thing that has truly impacted me has been my living experience this year. I haven’t been able to really tell anyone about it, besides my close friends and family, but I have this strange feeling that it is alright to put it here and no bad will come from it. I am of First Nation decent, my mother is Aboriginal, and my grandfather is aboriginal. I am proud of this fact and I have no problem telling anybody this. I am also not visually Aboriginal, that is, at first glance it would not be the first thought you would have. I know that this is not nearly as difficult, oppression wise, as being a visual minority, but it does have its hard aspects. I find that I am often in a position where I can’t decide if I should or should not clarify that I am First Nations. It is a difficult decision, when around someone who is maybe being racist or making racist comments, and I don’t know if I should say “Hey I’m Native” and have them react in a certain way (usually defensive which doesn’t make things better), or of I should not say anything at all, and feel like I am ashamed of who I am. It is a difficult struggle that has become more and more apparent as I have gotten older, as I really have never been exposed to much racism in my life. In EPS 200 I wrote the most important paper of my life to date. I wrote a paper on Oppression and Anti-Oppressive education. Reading journal articles about this topic, as well as constructing my own definition of what Oppression is, has help shaped who I am. Now, on to the living conditions I am facing. I have a racist roommate. (Saying it on here seems like much less of an accusation, because I feel like there isn’t any way I can deal with this problem I face daily) She knows I am Aboriginal, and yet she continues to make comments. I can’t even begin to describe the extent of her racism, and the ignorance she portrays through her words. After writing the paper, I understand how she reacts, and I even understand why she is racist… the real problem is, that it really takes a toll on me. Living with her has been one of the hardest things I have ever had to do in my life, and it’s really shaping the person I am becoming. I know that I can’t just get mad at her, I have to be calm and if I do so choose to argue with her I need to choose my words carefully. Remaining calm while being dragged down by her ignorant words is the hardest thing. And still I have to live with her, and see her everyday, and not cause conflict as it would only make it worse for her… It will not get better, being the person that she is, by having someone lecture her, or tell her that she is racist, because she has even said, “well I’m just racist, and nothing is going to change that.”

The most sickening part is she is in the education program.

Each day is really hard for me, but I know it is making me a stronger person… and I think it is happening for a reason. Over the course of this year I have heard things about ECS and how there is much more education about First Nations, and everyone has to take INDG, and I think that is where I want to aim to with my life. I can see the problems that these classes could be facing, and I would like to be the one who is tackling them, head on, ready to make the program as strong as it could be… I have decided the teacher I want to be is the teacher who is good enough to teach an education class at the University. It is a high goal, but I know that I will be involved with First Nations education and content in some way.

I guess that is all I really have to say,
See you next year,
Samantha Douglas