Mister Bradley performing this Saturday & Sunday at Houston’s Children Museum
I hope your Thanksgiving was fantastic!
And I want to spread the word: Mister Bradley will be performing at the Houston Children’s Museum this Saturday and Sunday in the auditorium. 3:00pm on both days. Come on out! And make musical merriment with us!
TIME TO SIGN UP FOR SUMMER!
Summer Is Here, Rockstars!
As the Spring session wraps up, I wanted to update you all again on what kind of musical mahem we’ve been up to!
More awesome success with learning music theory: We’ve spent a lot of time practicing different note patterns using the “Do Re Mi” method of notation. However, I have also introduced the idea of the “musical alphabet” and we learned what the difference is between the ABC alphabet which has, “lets count them”, 26 letters and starts on “A.”
But the musical alphabet is weird and wonderful. It starts on the letter “C and when it gets to “G” it doesn’t go to “H” of course, but all the way back to A. There are only 7 letters in the musical alphabet but it can repeat going lower or higher.
So we practice singing our musical alphabet (singing a C Major scale)
Children took turns playing boomwackers and handbells, which took lots and lots of patience and listening.
We sang Jingle Bells, Farmer in the Dell, Old MacDonald, BINGO, Three Blind Mice, Row Row Row Your Boat.
Children also took turns playing different rhythm patterns lollypop drums and tested “Billy Bird” to see if he could play the same thing. So they had to listen to each other very closely.
We also, learn more about different instrument families, continuing on with what we began at the beginning of the session. We learned about the string family: Viola, Violin, Cello, and Double Bass.
We also enjoyed listening to the different Saxophones and The Pink Panther theme played on the baritone saxophone was very popular many of the students. Here is the version they heard (I ripped the sound from the youtube video and we listened on a blue tooth speaker). We talked about how the music sounded “suspensful” and “sneaky”.
Also, here is a video of my students at the Innovative School singing Do Ra Mi. I have the video in a post on the Mister Bradley’s Musical Jam Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/misterbradleymusic
They sound great and I’m so proud of them.
FINALLY, and the is very important, NOW is the time to enroll for Summer session. This is the LAST WEEK of SPRING SESSION and if your child attends RICE CHILDREN’S CAMPUS, THE CATHEDRAL HOUSE SCHOOL or HEARTSHOME BRIGHT HORIZONS, please don’t be late! Sign up today! You should all have had flyers in your child’s mailbox.
It’s easy to sign up online
Or, of course, you may leave a check at your child’s school.
If you are on a “Pay-as-You” plan, you’re already taken care of!
Thanks again for taking an interest in your child’s education. It’s an honor for me and it’s been a great Spring. Here’s to the SUMMERTIME!
Spring time, Spring Time, Spring Time!
February was an awesome month for music. Of course, Valentines Day inspired songs of love and I always enjoy a good excuse to play Beatles songs! The kids learned the chorus to ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE and we sang it from the heart!
We also spent more time learning the different families of symphonic instruments. I have flash cards and we talk about what the instruments have in common… what makes them belong to the same “family”. Of course, since I’m a rockin’ roller, I throw a couple curve balls, just because I think it’s always important to experiment outside boxes: “Did you know the guitar can be percussion instrument too?” And I’ll play muted strums, or tap rhythms on the back of the body and sing, “ Pitter Patter Goes The Rain” , BINGO
Also, we’ve been enjoying “Baby Shark”, which helps with developing control over motor skills by making the finger plays gradually bigger with each verse. First snapping baby sharks, then snapping mama sharks, papa sharks, grandpa sharks, and so on. Also, we get to practice dynamics, go from soft to loud or “piano” to “forte”
This month is has become increasingly more important to me to really try and stretch the childrens’ experience with what it is to make music in a GROUP, to increase their sensitivity. For a couple weeks, I used my iPhone to record the kids singing BINGO and making sure they get the right number of claps on each verse. I used to think that it very well could be impossible to get ALL kids counting together. But recording them has been a very interesting experiment. When the kids hear it back, they get to hear themselves and remember what they did. And an extrodinary amount of learning happens in those moments. Because then the second time we record and sing the songs, the level of listening and heightened attention goes way up! And, in several cases, ALL children were on the same page. Amazing.
And here’s the remarkable thing: the lesson hasn’t been forgotten. The last couple weeks have been pretty impressive to me, with regards to listening and making music TOGETHER.
Also it had been a while since we sang with the “shakey eggs”. Some of the classes are getting so big, I’ve had to replenish my egg shaker supply so that there’s enough to go around for everyone.
“I Know a Chicken” (Laurie Berkner)
“Shake It! (Mister Bradley)
“We’re Going To Kentucky” (traditional)
And Spring is approaching so…
“Rain is falling”
“Zip a Dee Doo Dah”
And, most recently, we learned all about Fruit Bats! And were reminded how all things are connected. Trees give us Oxygen, we give trees Carbon Dioxide, and animals help carry seeds to Sunshine.
Can You See The Connection (Lucas Miller)
As always, Thank You for having me be a part of your child’s musical development. It’s a privilege and an honor!
By the way, I have a summer party special! Book today if you are having a party this summer!
The Weeks of June 30 and July 7, 2014
Greetings Rock Stars!
What we’ve had with the “HATS” lessons. We had fun with with Independence Day songs and I wore my big, tall, fluffy American Flag hat.
You’re a Grand Ol’ Flag
Fireworks, fireworks (to The Tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star)
Fill the sky, shining on the fourth of July
See them shoot up, see them flare,
See them light up everywhere,
Fireworks, fireworks fill the sky,
Shining on the Fourth of July.
Bang! Snap! Whistle! Pop! (To the tune of Row Row Row Your Boat)
Fireworks fill the air.
See them lighting up the sky
On the Fourth of July.
We also passed out flags and practiced waving them… being careful to not drop them or hit anyone with them! Counting stripes, counting stars (all the way to 50!) was great fun. And rolling them back up, nice and tight was a new experience for many children.
Then last week, we talked about the early pioneers. I wore a raccoon skin hat and the Howdy Earl puppet shared stories about settling texas. Pioneers didn’t have restaurants or grocery stores and they to hunt for their own food. The also had to build their own homes and entertain themselves with music. I brought the dulcimer again and we sang Ol’ Susanna and The Bear went over the River ( making up new verses, imaging all the places a Bear might go). Some kids had ideas about the Bear going into caves, into homes, over the museum, and up to the moon! Imagination is a wonderful thing… :) We alas went on an imaginary Bear hunt, making sound effects along the way, and snapped a picture of the bear quickly before running back home!
On the video below, from 3:15 to 4:03, is some fun footage of a reenactment of early settlers entertaining themselves with music around a fire. There is a covered wagon in the background and someone is playing Ol’ Susanna on the violin. Might be an interesting thing to show your kids, to match an example with what we talked about in class:
I’m looking forward to the coming weeks and different hats to share. Up next: the Railroad Conductor hat.
Thank You for taking an interest in your child’s musical development.
P.S. I tried to find a good rendition of The Bear Went Over The Mountainto share, but most are a little too cheesy for my taste. I did find this which has a nice acoustic guitar in it.
The Weeks of March 3rd and 10th
I don’t know what it is about the Springtime that has me immediately thinking of classic Disney songs, but I just couldn’t help myself!
We revisited the music terms of dynamics: piano, mezzo piano, mezzo forte, and forte with singing “Supercalifragilistic“, and as each phrase was sung, we got gradually louder; We’ve wished the swift arrival of Spring with “Zipadeedoodah”; “It’s a Small World” brought us together and encouraged us to make new friends wherever we go…
We also talked about all the fun we can have in our backyards: When the Ants Go Marching; Roly-Poly Caterpillar; The Hungry Caterpillar; Don’t Throw Your Junk in My Backyard. We also enjoyed Raffi’s “There’s a Spider on the Floor” and I reminded children that spiders can be beautiful, especially if you are lucky enough to watch them spin their web. But we don’t want to get too close them. And if you find one in your house, ask a grownup to take it outside for you. There’s use in stepping on it, since spiders help up by eating mosquitos!
Children also got to strum the guitar, the banjo, and the mandolin. We also practiced “drawing” sung pitches in the air by mimicking the sounds of the kazoo!
By the way, for parents that would like a quick brush-up on the basics of reading music, so you can help with your child’s musical development, this is a wonderful video:
REGISTER FOR THE SPRING NOW! and “BUG WEEK” at Opus One!
For parents with children at the CATHEDRAL SCHOOL, RICE CHILDREN’S CAMPUS, or HEARTS HOME BRIGHT HORIZONS on VOSS:
If you have not signed up for Spring Opus One classes or if you’re not on auto-pay please do so right now!
If you’re child is not signed up this week, I won’t be able to have your child in class.
If you need more time or if you are sending in payment online tonite, shoot me an email and let me know, so I can be sure to have them in class.
I am at the CATHEDRAL SCHOOL Monday morning; RICE CHILDREN’S CAMPUS on Tuesday afternoon; and HEARTS HOME BRIGHT HORIZONS on Wednesday afternoon.
This past week was all about BUGS! That’s right. Bugs. We sang about ladybugs and pretending to make them crawl on our toes, ankles, knees, thighs, thumb, wrist, elbow, shoulder. We also talked about how ladybugs are good to have in your garden because they eat the bugs that eat your vegetables.
We enjoyed a few different renditions of Itsy Bitsy Spider, including one in Spanish as well as a silly one, The Great Big Harry Spider.
By the way, here is a link to a sample of a Mister Bradley recording of Itsy Bitsy Spider.
(CDs are still on sale! And if you’re extra nice, I can extend the holiday discount of 5 dollars off!. Give it a Listen!
We also sang about Caterpillars turning into Butterflies.
Students also got a demonstration with a snare drum and we used it to help us march to The Ants Go Marching 2×2, Hurrah, Hurrah. And we had fun coming up with new rhymes to go with each new number.
The Musical Jam! CD is the perfect gift for friends with kids!
Looking for a gift for friends with kids? CHECK THIS OUT!
Opus One Music, The Week of December 9th, 2013
Greetings Rockstars! This week took our musical trip down south to Mexico and learned about Mariachis. We sang learned how to say “Merry Christmas” in Spanish and learned to sing Feliz Navidad. I also brought a huge sombrero and we talked about how important it is to cover you body if you’re out somewhere where the sun is hot all day long. We also sang Pollito Chicken, La Bamba, and a rhythm game called Bate Bate Chocolate.
Also, if you haven’t enrolled yet for next session, NOW IS THE TIME! If you do it before Friday 20th, you get a free OPUS ONE CD and a FREE T-SHIRT. So register HERE!
Opus One Music, The Week of December 2, 2013
The Week of Dec 2
Greeting Rockstars! This week we took a pretend musical trip to Italy and sang I am a Pizza, The Ravioli Song, and, one of my favorites, On Top of Spaghetti, which was accompanied with a very cool pop-up book. We also got to talk about our favorite things to put on a pizza and we all agreed that chocolate on pizza would be “ewwwwww”.
The Concertina was demonstrated again and we had more fun with holiday songs. We also danced to Jingle Bell Rock and Pepe the Puppet taught us being different is what makes us special. Rudolph most certainly is a good example of this. ;) Below is my favorite version of his song sung by Burl Ives.
Summer is Here!
Why not celebrate your child’s birthday with a Mister Bradley Concert? Call me!: 512-999-5305
Also, I recently… and FINALLY… purchased a piano! And if you’d like piano lessons for your kid over the summer and beyond, I’m available! I live off South Congress and can do lessons in my apartment.
Finally, I’ll be performing at Austin Children’s Museum quite a bit this summer… stay tuned for details…