Music teacher Ms. Smith speaks about the GarageBand Workshop.The only technical problem we encountered was getting our new, original music inserted into the video. Apple’s iMovie Trailer software allows the filmmaker to chose music only from a limited amount of music samples found within iMovie. In order to insert the kid’s musical compositions, a little manipulation needed to be done. Read my post here on how to do this successfully. As usual, the kids were immediately focused and raring to get to work. The idea of creating music on their iPads, iPhones and/or laptops grabbed onto and held their attention throughout the entire day. We’re all looking forward to seeing the final video and seeing Ms. Smith’s classroom again in September!
“ The one thing that I was hoping for was getting myself more used to using technology in the classroom and I think that has been accomplished because I have started to think where I can use these applications, and when.” Francesca Adamo, Prince of Peace Grade 6 TeacherGrade 5 and 6 students combined for a full day of hands on learning with their iPads and Garageband. The result was 60 new songs, created by 60 enthusiastic kids as part of a cross curricular learning adventure. The children were asked to bring in artifacts that were “personal, and had great emotional meaning to them” and by applying their newfound knowledge of what “Mood, Tempo, Pitch and Dynamics” in music means, go and create their own song that best represented their feelings about the artifacts.
“So phenomenal, that we want to have more kids being able to learn (GarageBand).” Martha Fitzpatrick, Prince of Peace Elementary School PrincipalIt was an endearing process as many of the children brought in photographs of their family members accompanied by a short description of their thoughts. We managed to post 52 of the songs on Youtube for the kids to brag about! We even managed to coax a few of the students into laying down a vocal track! In addition, the workshop gained rave reviews from teachers at Prince of Peace as well as the Principal herself, Martha Fitzpatrick but seriously, there’s nothing more heartwarming than the approval and excitement of the kids once they’ve experienced the feeling of making a song that they’ve dedicated to their loved ones!
“The kids we all lined up, (at recess) outside looking in here and I could see they all wanted to get in on the action”
What Happens neXt, Happened HERE!
Liane Paixão is a Resource Teacher at the TCDSB and part of the 21st Century Learning and Academic ICT Team.Not too long ago, I was contacted by Liane Paixão, a resource teacher at the TCDSB. I’d met Ms. Paixão several years ago at St. John Catholic School where my two children are still attending. Liane, at the time, was their core French teacher and both of kids just loved her and always spoke about her in our home. In an email, Liane conveyed to me the concept of the TCDSB’s 21C project and asked if I’d be interested in helping her produce a song she’d written specifically for the project. With no hesitation, I said “Sure! Let’s do it!
The Recording Process is Always a Learning ProcessDuring the recording process we spent a great deal of time talking about education and Liane explained the whole 21C concept to me with passion. I’d been teaching electronic music production for some time already and ran the concept by her about bringing these lessons into the Toronto Catholic District School Boards. The TCDSB recently approved the addition of iPads into their school curriculum, so it seemed a completely natural step in the right direction to add music lessons to the agenda due to the availability of such software programs as Apple’s “GarageBand”. The wheels started turning and this site is the first result of our combined ideas. I began asking myself, “Is this for real?”. Not only do I enjoy doing what I do, but to to take it one step further, into the school system, would be a secret dream come true. I’ve always enjoyed education and helping people. Teaching music production has been very rewarding. Generally speaking, the students who, I’ve taught have always bee there because they wanted to be there. The results of a lesson are not far off either and the rewards (on both sides – teacher/student) are what it’s all about. There’s no scholarship, no certificate, just the self esteem and confidence that comes with the accomplishment itself. Not to mention, my kids think I’m more awesome than ever now because I worked with their French teacher and had her over to the house to record and hang out awhile. After it’s all said and done though, Liane’s the celebrity around this household! Liane’s a very talented singer/songwriter/musician as well as an awesome educator and adapted very well to the idea of receiving a little guidance herself when it came time to record her song. She constantly reminds me of how I put her through the runners while doing vocal tracks but in the end, I was so impressed by Liane’s ability to listen and apply the direction she was being given as a vocalist on the spot. A rare talent indeed! Check out the final result (below) of Liane’s song “Is This For Real”. It’d be awesome if you purchase the song on iTunes. All proceeds from the sale of this song will be donated to the 21C initiative and be used to further the education of our children. While the budget for education in Ontario remains tight, every little bit of fundraising we can do goes a long way!
Project PitchAdditionally, I am collaborating with Liane and the TCDSB 21st Century Learning team in the implementation of the Project Pitch, a contest which will be announced soon, encouraging kids to make video submissions for the the song. There are prizes to be won by the kids who come up with the best video(s) to represent the song. Learn more about this at PROJECT PITCH Keep your ears open for new productions coming soon by both Liane and myself.
We’re the so called leaders of the future And we’ll be put to the test to come out and solve all the world’s problems After twelve years of confinement to a desk
How do you conquer bias and oppression by memorizing dates and facts? I can mix chemicals in a tube But, poverty? How do I react to that?
There’s more that we can do beyond the classroom walls You got the wisdom and I do believe that I can change it all So, before you give me a task, you send me on a mission (Ask yourselves) Is this for real? Is this for real? Is this for real?
There’s a big shift in the wind’s direction Pushing you to let me go to explore all my dreams and my passions Then, bring me back and challenge me to save the world
Gimme something to work with Gimme something to think of Gimme something I can explore My time is so precious I don’t want all my treasures at the bottom of your drawer
Before you gimme a task, you send me on a mission (Is this real, real, real?) Listen to my voice, you can build on my wonders (Is this real, real, real?) Can you crack the code to set free my ambitions? (Is this real, real, real?) Before you gimme a task, you send me on a mission (Is this real, real, real?)
Additional Information More about Liane PaixãoHoly Shift! Check out EdTechTeacher
B.Y.O.D. in 21st Century language meaning, Bring Your Own Device.With the budget restraints in the public school boards these days, the concept of BYOD is one that most school boards should be thankful for. Three hundred iPads per school, per city, translates to a massive unforeseen budget increase. While it seems like the perfect marriage between school boards and the households, we can’t help but be reminded of the needs of the underprivileged. Not all households can afford to purchase iPads or laptops for their children. Some are on welfare, have low income jobs and are feeling the pressure to “compete” with the Jones’ on many other levels let alone purchasing social devices. Kids will be kids. They see their friends with all these desirable devices and want one too. Who could blame them really? Combine that with most children’s nonchalent attitude regarding their care for their belongings and you’ve now got parents who are hesitant to purchase expensive, but helpful items for their children in the first place, coupled with the reality that they may lose them or break them within a matter of days. Our son loses everything: sweaters, gloves, USB keychains, his lunch bag . . . He has no regard for his belongings no matter how much we impose our suggestions on him as to the proper care of them so, the thought of sending him to school with an iPad or a laptop is very unsettling to us. Whether or not a family can afford to send their children to school with iPad’s and laptops is one thing. The students accountability is yet another. I see this as a good problem to have but one that needs a combined effort from the parent and the teachers (it is after all a collaboration, isn’t it?) to expend more effort on teaching the children about personal accountability in tandem with staying competitive as an academic entry.
” . . . companies may face regulatory obligations, and they’ll certainly have security concerns.”In a classroom consisting of Grade 2 to Grade 8 kids, it’s a pretty smooth marriage. Enter the corporation . . . Consider, for example, data access. Users want easy, immediate access to business information, from a wide variety of devices. But at the same time, companies may face regulatory obligations, and they’ll certainly have security concerns. So businesses will invariably want assurance that their data resides where it is supposed to, and any risk that it may be compromised — say, via a stolen device — can be eliminated. While it’s a huge financial advantage to businesses and schools to have their employees and/or students subsidize their operating costs, we inevitably run into the grey area of “who’s the boss” of these devices (iPads, Cellphones, laptops). When a company demands that they have complete access to your device and insist that corporate passwords be in place before you access personal emails, or Facebook posts, it’s easy to become jaded.
“We can’t rely on secular strategies to solve social inconsistencies.”Do we then teach our children that this is the new “norm”, and they should acknowledge corporate/academic demands or, do we say, “Just wait a second here . . . I’m (collectively) saving you thousands of dollars with this BYOD (savings) strategy, and you want what?” While it’s so convenient on both sides of the spectrum, what’s right? In my opinion, business is business. If you want to compete, belly up to the bar. Provide your employees with the hardware necessary to get the job done. If you’re the employee/student, leave your personal device at home and subscribe to the mandates of your employer. It’s as simple as that. Evolve with the times or get left behind. The employer doesn’t ask you to bring your own desk, chair, computer or telephone to the job. They’re subscribing to your ability to do what THEY need in order to be successful. Why should they request you to BYOD? Convenience is the Mother of disaster in this case. Let’s refocus. With respect to those who cannot afford their own devices, should there be separate rules? i.e.: the school provides those who can’t afford an iPad with an iPad BUT they can’t use that device for any personal data. Seems reasonable, no? NO. This breeds segragration in the classroom and identifies those whom are not in the same class. We need to have hope. Hope that those whom are not as fortunate, someday become more enabled to participate. We can’t rely on secular strategies to solve social inconsistencies. As usual . . . I’d love to hear your opinions. Please login to leave comment…
When I was a kid in school, the only hope I had for ever becoming involved in the recording end of the music business was to land a job in a recording studio, and the average kid’s chance of that ever happening was about 1 in a million. The only other possible option was to get a huge loan from the bank and build your own however, without the experience necessary to run a recording studio, banks didn’t look to favorably on this option.
Even as technology advanced toward the days of the home studio, companies such as Teac/Tascam began making 4 track open reel recorders but for a young teen, these too provided many financial woes. It wasn’t just the recorder that you needed in order to make recordings. You also needed a mixer, microphones, keyboards, guitars, amplifiers, speakers and the list goes on. The kicker is that, none of this high tech, expensive recording equipment guaranteed you with a “hi-fi” result. The equipment was only as good as the operator.
Assuming that you’d made a decent recording, how were you ever going to get it out there to the masses? There were no YouTube or Facebook sites for you to boldly solicit your awesome recordings. You were at the mercy of record companies, managers, publishers and the like. Once again, as a recording engineer, producer or songwriter, you were in the “dime a dozen” category. Millions were trying to do exactly what you were doing but without the assistance of social media.
There were no schools at that time specializing in Recording Engineering or Music Production. You were pretty much on your own unless you happened to know someone in the “biz”. By the mid 1980’s it became even more complicated. Digital technology was introduced. All of a sudden, and in the matter of a couple of years, analog technology was being weeded out in favor of the new digital technology. Vinyl recordings were being replaced with CD’s and computers were being introduced to the recording studios. If you didn’t embrace them, your days were silently numbered.
More and more recording facilities were using a digital recording system called ProTools. The majority of seasoned professionals scoffed at the idea of using a computer to record “high quality” records with and to this day, there are still many who are hanging onto that the theory that analog recordings are still the way to go. Unfortunately, those professionals are now mostly unemployed.