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.
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.”
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.
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."
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.
Tell students, "Let's check your work." Show students the correct answers on the whiteboard.
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."
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.
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."
Listen to each group. Select a winning group and let them perform for their homeroom teacher.