Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Friday, October 15, 2010

Halloween, whether or not you care to emphasis it, is a great time for listening and moving to some of the "spooky" classics. It's time to bring out "The Hall of the Mountain King", "Danse Macabre", "Funeral for a Marionette", and of course, Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor".  Listening at the elementary level doesn't mean sitting passively and staring at the music room walls. There are free teacher made visuals in PowerPoint and Smart's .notebook formats for most of these and other program music pieces on the internet. Better yet, make some listening maps of your own. I've been using a simple visual that I made to go with "In the Hall of the Mountain King". Instead of trying to recreate the story of Peer Gynt, I went a different direction using an ocean theme with a picture of a shark for the first section, a small group of tropical fish for the second section and an enormous school of larger fish for the loud final section. I plan to let students create their own story for another short program piece. I will have a sheet of paper with the same number of blank boxes as the sections in the piece. I'll let you know how this experiment turns out later.
   Besides using visuals, movement is a great way to illustrate different sections of a listening piece.  
Happy listening!