On Saturday, October 14th, the Alberta Orff Chapter gathered for Playful Possibilities with the incredible Aimee Curtis Pfitzner.
This workshop was a treasure trove of “ready to use” activities that could be implemented the following Monday. The overall message of the workshop was the various possibilities that you could do with each of the activities presented. Participants were encouraged to participate in all aspects of music making, such as playing instruments, singing, moving and creating.
One of the highlight activities was Monsters Don’t Eat Broccoli, a literature based lesson using the book by Barbara Jean Hicks. This was really an excellent activity to showcase the various possibilities that could come from one idea. Within this one activity, participants were asked to play instruments, sing, create rhythm patterns and move. It was really a full learning experience.
Throughout the workshop, Amy provided incredible advice on classroom management and inclusion in the classroom. These were excellent tidbits of information to add into our teacher toolkits. Aimee’s personality is extremely inspiring and participants were taken aback by her expertise. Aimee was able to transport us to a magical place where music was so much FUN!
On Wednesday, September 27, Kim Friesen Wiens presented a “Taste of Orff” session titled “WHAT'S ON YOUR PLATE? A NIBBLE, A MUNCH AND SOME DESSERT TOO!”. It was our Chapter’s first “Taste of Orff” session in a few years, and was a popular event for both university students and new and experienced music teachers to get an idea of what Orff is all about.
Kim got everyone up and out of their seats right away with a “Good Morning” ostinato/body percussion/movement activity that everyone could easily go back to their classrooms to teach the next day. Throughout the session, Kim talked about what exactly is Orff Schulwerk, and what it looks like in an elementary music classroom, emphasizing the student centred approach where all students learn together along with creativity, singing, moving, playing instruments. Next up was a fun and fruity activity where participants created 16 beat rhythm patterns using a variety of fruits, and then adding non-pitched instruments, scarves and the beats of the popular song “Dance the Night” by Dua Lipa to make the activity come alive. Kim's passion for incorporating DEI principles into her teaching was presented in the last two activities of the session. Drawing on her experiences teaching and learning in China, participants learned a Mandarin song all about candy. They then added various borduns to accompany the song on the Orff instruments, and expanded the song by creating new sections with a candy rondo. We ended the session with a beautiful song and book by Buffy Sainte-Marie called “Still this Love Goes On”.
Taste of Orff was an amazing session full of enough bites of Orff to keep us all coming back for more!
Alberta Orff Blog
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