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Debussy to Dubstep

"A Place for Popular Music in the Classroom" - A Presentation to the OMEA Momentum 2013 conference

Lauren Simmons

on 9 September 2014

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Transcript of Debussy to Dubstep

Debussy to Dubstep
Reflecting, Responding and Analysing
Small Scale Tasks
"pop music with my instrument" research or sharing
Listening Journals
(or similar tasks in class)
tie studies in history to modern equivalent situations
the Elements
using modern examples
asking students to bring in and share music they listen to (in a variety of contexts)
The secondary music classroom should be a place where we equip students to think critically and apply their knowledge when approaching all kinds of music. If we create classrooms that are inclusive and reflect our students' realities, we are more likely to engage them in meaningful learning.
Large Scale Projects
Junior Grades: final research project on
Famous Musical Canadians (Hall of Fame)
Senior Grades: final research/creation project that is open-ended to allow student selection of topic (
genres of music?
) for in-depth study
own choice of performance tasks (why not?)
score or listening analysis on final exams
arranging projects
A Place for Popular Music in the Secondary Music Classroom
A Presentation to OMEA "Momentum 2013" by Lauren Simmons
traditional methods of analysis exclude students
popular music is overtly or covertly derided by teachers
see all musics as equal (under
"The Elements"
use given frameworks (
Critical Analysis process
break down expectations around both POPULAR and CLASSICAL
Common Misconceptions
About Popular Music
Curricular Impetus for Including Popular Music
A Plan for Placing Popular Music
Rap / Hip-Hop
Radio Pop
Punk and Related
"Indie" Rock and Folk

But the REAL reason to include Popular Music...
"I definitely enjoyed bringing my own musical taste to this class not only because I could explore more about the type of music I am passionate about but, also because I was able to learn more about my peers' tastes too. This allowed me to open my ears to different sorts of genres of music and hear it from people who had a love for it which made it that much more interesting. I think students would benefit from studying modern day music as well as historical music because they'll be able to connect the two different time periods and see similarities and differences. This would also accent the constant evolution of music which is very important in music's life. Personally, I find that studying music I hear on the radio or live in concert is more interesting compared to music from the past just because I can relate to it more and have more of a voice about musical figures and styles."
characterized by singable, repetitive melodies and predictable chord progressions

eg. "Party in the USA"

compare with Classical era, rondo form, and works by Mozart and Haydn
characterized by synthesized beats, repeated (sometimes melodic) chorus and rhythmically recited verses

eg. "Compromise"

discuss evolution of the form and social commentary like in the Romantic era
characterized by sampling to create repetitive rhythmic and melodic features, with a build-up and break-down

eg. "Infinity"

discuss in terms of texture and dynamics
characterized by simple chord progressions, often featuring dissonance or distortion

eg. http://rd.io/x/QVDIcTdemxzN/

discuss social commentary and use of timbre to portray the message, like word painting in Renaissance era
varying in styles, but often characterized by use of acoustic instruments including banjo and mandolin

eg. "I Will Wait"

discuss origins of roots music
Links for this presentation:

Google Docs: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0Bwiqfiz88SvLVElESG9XWlVvRzQ&usp=sharing

Today's Meet: http://todaysmeet.com/OMEASimmons

Playlist: http://rd.io/x/QVDIcTME_kI/

My class blog: http://lhsamm.blogspot.ca/

Musical Venn Diagrams
Sample Documents:
Google Drive Folder
Full transcript