Hopscotch_Instruments

Coding Music Instrument Apps in Hopscotch

Why should we bring coding into the music room?

Because not only is it cross curricular and ticking the STEAM methodology of teaching, it is also asking our students to think about the fundamentals of music. What is it we need to consider when making an instrument? Pitch, melody, and/or beat, rhythm, tempo and tone colour.

hopscotchThe best iPad app I found for coding music is Hopscotch. While it does not have as much scope as the Scratch coding program on a computer, it still gives enough scope to create both a melodic and percussion musical instrument and an authentic unit of work covering these objectives:

Knowledge: Musical instruments are invented and designed to play the pitch, melody, and/or beat, rhythm, tempo, tone colour.

Skills: Code a music instrument which, when tapped, changes its look in some shape or form and includes more than one sound/tone/note.

Summative Task 1:

Play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star together as a class, each student playing on a correctly coded melodic instrument matching the Boomwhacker notes and colours.

Boomwhacker Piano

https://c.gethopscotch.com/p/xy3g0pu9q

Boomwhacker Spin Piano Note Names

https://c.gethopscotch.com/p/xyxy4anpx

Summative Task 2:

In groups, arrange a composition to perform a simple song using your own coded musical instrument app in an iPad Band.

Hot Cross Buns_4 part arrangement_Sample

class_snapshot

Here is an example from my students.

Check out some Hopscotch instrument apps my students have created and yours can too!

Piano and Percussion App

Tap the squares to play the piano, tap the circles to play percussion/abstract sounds (N.B. this project is best played in the iPad app as it does not play so well in a web browser due to its complexity)

https://c.gethopscotch.com/p/xvtzpj372

 

Sound Effects Pad App

IMG_1289

Tap the emoji images to play the abstract percussion sounds (plays fine in a browser)

https://c.gethopscotch.com/p/xstfaq6r6

Drag to Play App

IMG_1287

Drag the parrot on top of images to play sounds (plays fine in a browser)

https://c.gethopscotch.com/p/xtt56eofh

folder_download_100Purchase this Unit of Work from my

Music Room Tech series

Includes:

  • IB Unit of Inquiry
  • Australian Curriculum links
  • Step by step visual instructions
  • Charts
  • Scores
  • Arrangement worksheets

What is Hopscotch?

Hopscotch is a coding app designed for students to learn to code by creating their own games.

Website: www.gethopscotch.com

It uses a simple jigsaw puzzle method of dragging blocks of code into the window to create an instruction for your character to do, eg move or play a sound.

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It has multiple coding fundamentals including, conditionals, variables, loops and many more.

Hopscotch works with an online account, students need a username and a password, but they do not need to put in an email address.

While it is online, you can choose to publish your work in the Hopscotch community or just keep them as drafts.

As drafts, students can not share their project with you, you will need to view it on their iPad.

My students publish their work, copy the weblink, and send me a message in Showbie with the link for me to view. I can then save their project as a draft to my account.

Have a go at coding instruments in your music classroom.

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Teach to transform!

Cheryl

 

 

folder_download_100Purchase this Unit of Work from my

Music Room Tech series

Includes:

  • IB Unit of Inquiry
  • Australian Curriculum links
  • Step by step visual instructions
  • Charts
  • Scores
  • Arrangement worksheets
MIDI_instrument_blog

Create your own MIDI musical instrument with Scratch and the Makey Makey

STEMvsSTEAM-GIRL

Coding is the new buzz word in primary education with many schools starting to teach it with the emphasis on teaching STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).

It is also possible to add in the Arts, with new research showing  that teaching STEAM (STEM + the Arts) projects significantly impact learning.

Intrigued by this, I attended a workshop on coding in the classroom run by Stephanie Kriewaldt @stephkrie to see if I could add coding into my music classroom.

I was introduced to a computer and web-based program called Scratch, which is a simple coding program for use with students as young as Grade 3.

Percussion_codeit_bells_cropped

MaKeyMaKey_kit

We were also shown the Makey Makey Invention kit, invented to be used as a fun, electronic circuit MIDI controller using conductive materials as the triggers for computer games.

Seeing the Makey Makey attached to fruit and controlling a very simple piano coded in Scratch (the fruit being the piano keys), I came away from this workshop enthused to write a 10 week unit of work for my Grade 6/7’s titled

SC_Makey Makey_FC_smallScratch Coding for the Music Room: Makey Makey Edition

as it would fit perfectly with their IB PYP classroom Unit of Inquiry on inventions.

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I started by creating some projects in Scratch myself, connecting them with the Makey Makey, setting up stations around the room for students to investigate.

 

See the slideshow below.

We also talked about virtual instruments coded for use on iPad’s and computers and discussed how MIDI instruments are played.

Check out my Scratch  Percussion with Metronome project 

 

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I created a Scratch tutorial for my students to learn to code music sounds into scratch. Then sent them off on the summative assessment task to invent their own musical instrument, by coding a virtual instrument in Scratch and then inventing their own MIDI instrument to play their virtual Scratch instrument using the Makey Makey.

The result was fantastic, my students were extremely proud of their work, so much so that they wanted to share their projects with their parents and the school community on Graduation night. Below is a slideshow of my student’s projects:

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Scratch Coding for the Music Room: Makey Makey Edition

is part of my Music Room Tech series with Bushfire Press. It includes everything you need to teach, including tutorials, scratch project files and more.

View my introduction video below.

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Teach to transform!

Cheryl

 

Scratch Coding for the Music Room- Makey Makey Edition