Age Range: Middle School, High School
Learning Objective: Students will learn about the characteristics of a scherzo while listening to some playful examples!
Note to Teachers: As opposed to a sequential lesson plan, this lesson is a pick-and-choose model. Select repertoire and activities from the lists below based on your time and needs.
EXPLAIN. “A scherzo (SKAIR-tzo) is a short piece of music, often a part of a larger work (like a symphony.) The word ‘scherzo’ means ‘to jest’ or ‘to joke’ in Italian. So a musical scherzo sometimes has a playful quality. Scherzos tend to share some characteristics, including the following:
“Playful sounding, with a fast tempo.
“Follows an ABA form. Remember that means we hear one thing, then something different, then the first thing again. In a scherzo, that ABA pattern is sometimes repeated, meaning the pattern becomes ABABA.
“In 3/4 time signature, meaning that beats are organized in groups of three.
“Part of a larger work, like a symphony.”
“Every composer who writes a scherzo does it a little differently. Some scherzos include all the characteristics listed above, and some do not include any.”
LISTEN. Invite students to use a grid like the one below to notice the characteristics of each scherzo that you listen to together.
We can group instruments into four families: strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion. Sing and play a game to learn the characteristics of each instrument family!
Making up music on the spot is called “improvisation.” Learn how musicians improvise and practice creating your own music in this hands-on lesson!
Explore the basic concept of musical harmony improvising to create simple harmonies using visual prompts! For elementary age students, but adaptable for all ages.
Music is full of patterns. Learn about the ABA pattern in music and use it to create your own composition!
How do musicians stick together without a conductor? Help students understand and practice ENSEMBLE SKILLS in this lesson.
No two voices sound exactly the same. But, all voices fall into a range. Learn about four main voice types: soprano, alto, tenor, and bass!
Opera is for everyone- including kids! Our host Victoria explains what opera is, then introduces you to three opera singers. Perfect for elementary ages.
In part two of our opera lessons, Victoria uses opera to tell two stories: one about lunch, and one about special events. Students will be able to compose their own aria at the end of the lesson.