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Jazzing-Up Thanksgiving!

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Keywords: Jazz, Spirit, Thanksgiving, Thankfulnessu
Subject(s): Information Skills, Art, Photography, Video, Spelling, Technology, Grammar, Podcasting, Writing, Drama, Music, Reading, English/Language Arts
Grade 7
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Research and Information Fluency
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  • Digital Citizenship
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Groveton Jr Sr High School, Groveton, TX
Planned By: Lydia Dockens
Original Author: Lydia Dockens, Groveton
Day Procedure
1. Daily warm-up on the board: What is spirit? What do jazz / blues and spirit have in common?
2. A Venn diagram will be used to compare/contrast jazz/blues and spirit. As the discussion continues, symbolism is discussed.
3. Students will list the symbols that represent Thanksgiving. Students will analyze how they apply to the present day culture and their life.
4. Students will begin the “Spirit Drawing” to illustrate the “Spirit” (symbols) of Thanksgiving and the “Spirit” (symbols) that represent the student and/or what they love.

Spirit Drawing Procedure

Materials needed:
• Fabric (18” square handkerchiefs)
• Sharpie markers – assorted ultra fine
• Black Sharpie marker (for outlining design) – fine tip
• Pencil
• Roll of packing tape
• Manila art paper
• Spray bottle with rubbing alcohol (optional)
+ Students will draw the symbols that represent the “Spirit” on the manila art paper.
+Once the final drawing on the manila paper is completed, draw over the pencil lines with black sharpie marker.
+Position the paper on a flat surface and tape it down, then center the handkerchief over the drawing.
+Trace the drawing on the handkerchief. Once the handkerchief is traced, add color.
+When the project is complete, spray rubbing alcohol on it to give it a watercolor effect.
5. Digital Cameras will be used to take pictures to display the products in the completed project.

Tuesday - Thursday
Students will select a jazz/blues singer and begin the research. This may be done individually or in groups, depending on the teacher’s choice. The students will use mobile carts, non-fiction books, biographies to complete their research. Worksheet attached.

Just Singin’ the Blues (Wooksheet)
The “blues” are the musical and inspirational source for much of today’s modern popular music, from rock and roll to rap. During this unit of study, you will be writing a biography on a blues artist and creating your own “blues” song, plus designing a powerpoint, and performing your music on video.

Biography / Report Requirements
Information to be included in the report:
 Where were she / he born?
 What was it like for that person growing up? (How many were in their family? Where did they grow up? Were they poor or rich? What did their parents / guardians do for a living?)
 What or who were his / her musical influences?
 What years did the artist perform?
 What is his / her music best know for?
 What were the political times like during the time he / she was recording music?
 How did society treat the musician? (Was he / she accept and recognized during his / her life time? Did his / her fame come later? Did his / her fame come later?)
 Any other information that you feel is important or interesting.

Friday - Thursday
Students will use The Write Source to write the report and produce a power point on the researched jazz/blues singer.

Students will present the power points.

Monday – Friday
Goal: Students will reflect on the “Spirit” drawing and write a jazz/blues song to report their feelings of thankfulness.
1. Listen to and analyze jazz/blues of different artist.
2. Reflect on the mood and tone of each piece.
3. Relate the music to lives and experiences of the song writers.
4. Write the “Blues Song”.
Just Singin’ the Blues (Worksheet)
How to start:
• Brainstorm 5 experiences related to the thankfulness of Thanksgiving and list them.
• Circle one and write a summary, explaining how story and how you felt.
• Review the reflection (summary) and circle or highlight 3 or 4 phrases that are meaningful to your experience.
• Create blues songs using the phrases as repeated.

 Songs should consist of five to six verses of three lines each.
 The first and second lines of each verse should be the same length.
(Same number of words.)
 The third line of each verse should be as long as line one and two combined.
(Add the words in lines one and two to determine how many words must go in line three.)
 The second and third lines of each verse should rhyme.
 Insert a “refrain” or rhythmic pattern as indicated on the sample song.
(Something like dah DAH dah dah dah)
 The final verse should be different rhythmically from the rest. It should sum up all the frustrations in the song and end in “yeah” or “oh yeah!”
Be sure to include the following in your song.
 Name the setting.
 Tell what you are doing.
 Introduce the reason for thankfulness.
 Explain why it is something for which to be thankful.
 Bring it to a close, repeat the last line.
 Change the rhythm and end it with yeah!

Using the Tool Factory Movie Maker, the students will select what tool to use to best represent their project. The students will combine the unit by producing a movie which will include the following:
• A video clip of the student introducing the artist and how they were inspired will be presented. Students will present an oral reading of the artist’s song and the specific inspiration within the song.

• A interview with the student about their song creation and how it expresses their thankfulness

• The student will explain the “Spirit” drawing and how the music of the artist relates to the drawing and their “spirit” of Thanksgiving
Reflecting on the project: What would need to be changed with project? What needs to stay the same? Does the project need to be expanded? Any sugesstions for using this technology with a novel unit?
Materials: Whiteboards, Mobile Labs, Flip Video, Point and Shoot, Short Throw Projectors, Microphones, Video Tools, Printers, Tripods, Batteries, CDs and DVDs, English/Language Arts, Reading, Literacy, Writing, Middle, Books, Word Processor, Art Tools, Inspiration, Slideshow, Clip Art, Worksheets, Pro Composition, Early Composition, Student Resources, Integrating Technology, Dyslexia