Darcie Pickering


*This assignment is the final project in a unit on musical forms.


Objective:  Through the use of video and editing equipment, students will demonstrate their understanding of various musical forms.  Forms included in this lesson might be, Through Composed, Cannon, Theme and Variations, Rondo, and ABA.


Purpose:  This lesson will allow students to study one form in an intensive manner and then present their project to the class.  The class will learn about other musical forms through the viewing of their peersą projects.


Materials Needed: 

3-4 digital video cameras (one per group of 3-4 students)

DV tapes


if possible iDVD (not necessary)

blank DVDs


Anticipatory Set:  The students will produce a video that visually depicts a specific musical form.  The only sound in the video will be the piece of music the group has chosen.  The goal is for the movie to effectively depict the form of the piece, even if we were to turn the volume down.


Procedure:  This part of the assignment should be introduced at the end of a class period so that groups have time to find the music they will need before the next class period.

  1. Assign one form to each group.  Tell groups not to tell the other groups what form they have.
  2. Instruct each group to find a piece of music that is written in the form that they have been assigned.  You can ask them to find music from a specific genre/time period, or leave it up to them.  If they are allowed to use pop music, the teacher, for obvious reasons, should approve it first.
  3. The next class period should be an łopen lab.˛  Students may want to start by listening to the piece and mapping out a storyboard or plan for the filming process. 
  4. The students should then begin filming.  A second class period may be needed to finish filming.  Groups may also want to work on this outside of class.
  5. Next, the groups will import their footage into iMovie and begin the editing process.  They may want to turn the track volume on the video off and import the song from iMovie thus eliminating room noise.
  6. When the videos are complete, save them and burn them to a DVD.


Check for Student Understanding:  Watch the videos as a class. Have the groups guess which form is being depicted. You will know whether they łget it˛ or not.


Closure: Try watching the videos with the volume turned down.  Are they still effective?  Finally, assign a one page reflective paper (each student writes his own paper) in which he addresses the process his group went through to produce their video.  They should also address any significant successes and/or problems the group encountered. 


Extensions:    You may want to assign each group a piece of music and ask them to identify the form and then make the video.  This project may also be incorporated into a unit on composition.  In this case, the students may be asked to write their own piece of music in a certain form and then produce a video.