Monday, April 13, 2020

    Dear Parents and Guardians,

    As we enter our final seven weeks of the 2019-2020 school year with remote learning I want to let you know the direction music will take. Many of the district music teachers have opted to expand “music class” to “Fine Arts class,” realizing that with shelter in place many students may be limited in their creative outlets.

    The first few weeks in particular will be a learning time for me as well as your child. Initially much of what I teach will have to be written out in words rather than by way of a video. Parents of primary children, I ask you to help your child with the words and with finding the computer sites. If something doesn’t work, please let me know at conrankaren@dublinusd.org.

    Each week I will send out a new lesson by way of your classroom teacher and (as I learn how) will also post that lesson on my website. It will include:

                -Listening to music. There will be links to specific pieces that I would like students to hear (at least in part), questions about those pieces, and new ideas introduced. The students do not need to write the answers to the questions (although upper grades I may very well include a listening journal for you in a couple of weeks), but I would like the students to be able to express themselves verbally.

                -Something creative for your child to do. This may be in any area of the arts, depending on the length of the other parts of the lesson.

                -At the moment I am having trouble finding a way to incorporate teaching the technical aspects of music i.e. reading and writing rhythms and learning to sight sing and by extension composing. However, I’ve just begun researching my options, and I’m sure I’ll find something that does not include countless worksheets for you to print thereby running up your ink cartridge bill to astronomic levels. J

                -Third grade (and Ms. Kwan’s spilt grade) recorders, I would like you to use your phone (or whatever you use) and video yourself playing your assigned pieces. I will email you back with pointers – private lessons. J Parents, if the sound is high-pitched squeaking be sure your child is completely covering the holes and that s/he is not blowing too hard. Beginning recorder can be very painful to listen to, but send them to a room with a mirror so they can see those holes and the improvement should be really exciting.

                In the next couple of weeks I will be learning to make videos to share with the kids. This should help cut down the amount of time I have to ask parents to read to the little ones.

                If you have questions or fine arts ideas please email me at conrankaren@dublinusd.org. Looking forward to exploring a whole new dimension of creative arts with you.


    Sincerely, Karen Conran