Spotted in Manila, 2014

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Prokofiev's Grumpy Cat

To learn about the instruments of the orchestra and how they each have their own personality and character, we have been studying Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf in my 2nd grade classes.

In this classic story and piece, each character (Peter, Bird, Duck, Cat, Grandfather, Wolf) is represented by a different instrument and theme (strings, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, respectively). After previous classes in developing our ears to hear the differences between these instruments, we tested out what we've learned in the context of Peter and the Wolf. 

We focused on the cat's theme music and worked on this worksheet. The questions asked on the worksheet ("Does this music sound like a cat to you? Why or why not?" and "If you wrote the Cat's theme, how would that music sound? What instrument would you use?") were very difficult to answer. It is very hard to speak in words how music sounds and should sound. But I loved the answers the students gave. This one really stood out as clever and articulate.

"It does sound like a cat because usually cats are grumpy, tired, and very, very, very, very curious."

"I would use a bassoon or a clarinet because when cats walk around slowly they look mysterious and curious so that would be the bassoon. But when cats jump around it's high like a clarinet."

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