This summer I had the opportunity to attend an Orff Level 1 Certification course at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. This was such enlightening and exciting experience. I have taught using the Orff Schulwerk process in the past using what I learned from workshops and conferences, but what I had were only bits and pieces. During the 2 week course I was given the chance to improvise, create and compose both music and dance. I was taught the elements of dance as well the basics of recorder. We composed and performed pieces that combined the orff instruments (xylophones, metallophones, glockenspiels, small percussion etc), recorder, dance and voice. Children like to play as well as sing and the use of the orff instruments leads to active listening and participation. In working with the instruments, we work as an ensemble and the students must learn to work together, an essential life skill. Every day of the course my mind was opened a bit further and new connections made. I can’t wait to bring improvisation (both movement and musical), singing, playing, and creating to our students at BRCVPA in a bigger, more comprehensive way!
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