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Star Wars Rap | Music Lesson Plan (Composition)

from the Lesson Zone




Make your next music classroom lesson a galactic adventure! This music composition lesson and worksheet gives students their first opportunity to write music like Star Wars film composer, John Williams.

Level

Grade 2-4

Objective

Students will compose in groups with simple rhythms to complete the Star Wars Rap, and then perform their piece on non-pitched percussion instruments. This lesson is designed to fulfill Standard #4 of the National Standards for Music: Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines and Standard #8: Understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts.

Materials

Star Wars Rap | Music Composition Worksheet
Non-Pitched Percussion Instruments
Pencils


'Star Wars Rap' Music Lesson Plan (Composition)

Step 1
Ask students, "Who knows what a composer does? Correct. A composer organizes the sound and silence in music. Who thinks they are old enough to be a composer? You’re right. Mozart was writing music at age four."

Step 2
Tell students, "Today you'll be composing music just like John Williams did for movies like Star Wars, Jurassic Park, and Indiana Jones. You'll work in groups to write a Star Wars rap. The first part is already written. Your job is to finish it.”

Step 3
Tell students, "Before we begin, we need to review a few rhythms." Write the rhythms from the Star Wars Rap worksheet on the whiteboard and clap them with the class. Then review the rhythms by asking individual students to clap them.

Step 4
Tell students, "For this activity you’ll work in groups of two or three. I want you to do three things: 1) Get a worksheet and pencil for yourself, 2) Find a group to join, and 3) Sit with your group."

Step 5
Tell students, "At the top of your worksheet there is a connect-the-dot activity. As a group, speak the Star Wars character's names to each of the rhythms on the right to figure out which rhythm works best. Connect the dots. Continue in the same way for each of the characters." Younger students may benefit by you speaking the character's names one at a time as a class and by you closely guiding the rhythm selection.

Step 6
Tell students, "Let's check your work." Show students the correct answers on the whiteboard.

Step 7
Tell students, "We just completed the first part of composing a piece. We combined rhythms and lyrics to see what worked. The next step is use these rhythms and lyrics in your rap."

Step 8
Tell students, "Let's learn the first part of the Star Wars Rap and then I'll give you ten minutes to complete the rap with your group. Figure out what order the characters should go in and then write the rhythms and the lyrics on the bottom two staves of your worksheet." Teach the rap in two measure groups until students are proficient. Provide non-pitched percussion instruments to every student. Circulate the classroom to help student groups.

Step 9
Tell students, "Let's hear your compositions. The group with the most impressive composition, performance, and notation will have an opportunity to perform for your homeroom teacher."

Step 10
Listen to each group. Select a winning group and let them perform for their homeroom teacher.


Extension

Students may elect to add simple ostinato on a bass xylophone/metallophone to their composition for an added texture.


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