Music in the Art Studio -Pictures of Sound

In a post that was mainly about a fun painting activity,  Teacher Tom, (dont-fence-me-in) talked about his method of planning, and how it is different from so many of his blogger friends. My planning process is also different from many of my teacher friends who write lessons and know exactly what materials they will need for any given week. From Reggio comes the idea of "extra pockets" -a way of planning for what may happen in a school where we let the curriculum emerge from the interactions of the children, teachers and the environment. As I prepare for our inquiry into music and sound, I am filling my imaginary pockets with information and ideas. The teachers have brainstormed a fantastic list of things that might come up, provocations to make things happen and materials that we should have on hand. 
I can imagine that we may see children making things to play music on, composing music and writing songs, listening to the sounds of the birds and animals outside, as well as the sounds of the bulldozers and workmen (our campus is under construction). What other directions might we go in?
As the keeper of the studio I am interested in helping children cross modes (represent things in multiple media) which inspires deeper thinking and cements learning. Drawing pictures of sound or building a model of an animals cry are hypothetical examples of taking something from one mode and representing it in another. So here are my research questions for right now; "How can visual representation relate to sound? How can we make music visible?"


Looking around the interweb, I see lots of examples of sound mapping like these, on www.nysoundmap.org -a fascinating idea considering our work with mapping last term. I also found references to Plato's ideas about the Universe, the celestial bodies, each representing a distinct note, and the idea of cosmic harmony. I must have read about this "music of the spheres" before, but have forgotten. I can imagine the story of this theory might be very evocative to children.


I wonder what will happen next?

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