“Thunder & Lightning” Polka Drawing

by Cherie Herring on February 12, 2014 · 2 comments

in Teaching Ideas, Videos

What fun we had with “Thunder & Lightning” Polka Drawing.

We learned that composers sometimes wrote music to make us feel a certain way or imagine something in our minds. Without knowing the title beforehand, the children drew what they heard and experienced “Thunder & Lightning” polka drawing.

“Thunder & Lightning” Polka Drawing

Start with a story

Thunder & Lightning Drawing kidA good story always sets the stage for memorable learning. Telling the children about my fear of storms as a child opened the door for brainstorming all of the different sounds that might be heard during a thunderstorm.  For each sound that we could imagine, the children came up with an instrument the composer might could use to represent that sound. When the anticipation was sufficiently built up, and the clouds in the room were heavy and dark, “Thunder & Lightning” polka drawing began.  Sweet release! In the video above, it’s easy to see the children completely engrossed in drawing as they hear every boom, every raindrop, every crash of lightning.

End with a smile

After the drawing is complete, we watched an orchestra play Strauss’s Lightning Polka. First, I showed them little Jonathan (4 yrs) conducting the orchestra.

As they listened their ears were tuned and their minds were focused on discovering which instruments play their part in the storm. I’ve also shown this video with a closer look at the instruments. “Thunder & Lightning” Polka Drawing is such as simple lesson yet it is always the most memorable for the children… and me. Nothing compares with the smiles on my students’ faces as they respond to wonderful music. Do you agree?

I love my job!!

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous February 24, 2014 at 4:37 PM

You just cannot imagine what your ideas have done for my music classroom! I love visiting your blog and appreciate every ounce fo hard work you put into what you do!


Cherie Herring February 24, 2014 at 9:57 PM

Thank you so much for your kind words that made me smile all over!! You just made my day!!


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