Dance, Drama and Performing

To view Mrs, Watson and K/1/2/3 original post, click the link below…

Our First ABC Performance

Hello Mrs Watson and K/1/2/3,

A favourite instrument... Like so many things in life I have many favourites because I like the sounds. I play a little recorder, flute and piano but not very well so they are amongst my favourites.

At times, I like unusual musical sounds so discovering new instruments means hearing new sounds. From more ancient instruments in Aboriginal culture such as the didgeridoo (another spelling is didjeridu), clapsticks and bullroarer to instruments such as sitars (India), shamisen (Japan), djemba drums (Africa), Taiko drums (Japan), and voices raised in music, I like the sounds. They can be fascinating.

One big activity I have here in Australia is filming school and community performances in order to produce DVDs andsometimes CDs. While I can’t share the images, I can share the sounds from some performances. Here is a little audio from a few of the performances I have put together for you…

African Djemba drums and a cowbell

Djemba drumshave a fantastic sound when played together. You can feel the sound in the room. This is the sound of around 30 drummers from a primary school.

Didgeridoo and clapsticks

Didgeridoos are played by the men in a number of Aboriginal cultures. Women aren't permitted to play one. Clapsticks are two stcks struck together to give the beat. This was a recording of primary school boys and girls performing a traditional dance.

Dingboxes and boomwhackers

I must admit, when I first heard of dingboxes and boomwhackers, I wasn't certain what they were. Did you know? Dingboxes are boxes with a springed lid and a tuned bell inside. Step on the box lid and the bell rings. Boomwhackers are length of tuned plastic tubes you can hit together. The other sound a little like a drum is a person hitting a box with their hand.

Recorder and violin

As I once taught the recorder in class, I like their sound if played well. This is the sound of 31 primary school recorder players with two high school students playing violins over a recorded background.

Loop pedal

This was a new piece of equipment I heard for the first time this year. It was used by a high school student to create an original piece. You will hear her add sound using only her voice. The Loop pedal stores the sound and then repeats it while she adds a new sound. After adding a third sound to make the backing, you hear her sing. I thought it was fascinating to hear one person create such a sound using the loop pedal.

Storm Choir

This is an original piece of music from a performance I was asked to record. A choir of 9 people use their voices to create the sounds of a coming storm. You hear thunder as they stamp their feet and their voices create the sound of rain falling.

Taiko Drums

Taiko drums are traditional in Japan. Played together, I like the sound. You can feel the sound in the room as Taiko drums are played.

I also like the sounds of nature. Listen to the sounds of these birds…

A favourite, the kookaburra…

While hiking recently, I saw one kookaburra fly to a tree where another was perched. I suspected they would start to sing together. The recording is the sound they made. Can you hear why some people think kookaburras are laughing at us?

While hiking, 50 to 100 ravens landed in the trees around me…

It was quie a surprise to see so many ravens in one place so I took out my phone and recorded them. The raven choir sounded incredible.

and a sound recording taking me weeks to get close enough, the lyrebird…

The lyrebird, named for the lyre shape of its tail, is a mimic bird. This recording is of a lyrebird copying the calls of other birds. I have heard of lyrebirds copying the sound of machines and of one, raised from a chick by someone who played the flute, being heard mimicking the sound of flute music. While shy of people in the wild, I have seen them a number of times but find it hard to get close enough to record them singing. On the day of the recording, I was down wind from the bird and could see its lyre tail just above a bush. It didn't see or hear me.

  * * * * *

While sounds can be loud, soft, musical and even horrible, they are part of the world we live in. Whether we hear them or feel them, I love hearing interesting new sounds.

Did I say feel them? Have you felt the vibrations caused by sound? Drum beats, especially large drums, bass guitars, and the delicate vibrations of a soft piano piece when you put your ear against the piano, we can both hear and feel them.

Did you know one of the great composers, Beethoven, became deaf as he grew older? He still composed music but would place his ear against the piano to feel the sounds. He wrote his final and 9th symphony when almost totally deaf.

Did any of you feel the music through the floor as you listened to your ABC performance?

Recognising the Original People of This Land

Official school events in my region normally start with an Acknowledgement of Country. It recognises the original owners of the land. Click the link below to hear one of my recordings.

Acknowledgement of Country

This audio recording should not be used without my written permission.

The Australian Aboriginal Flag

The Australian Aboriginal Flag was designed by artist Harold Thomas and first flown at Victoria Square in Adelaide, South Australia, on National Aborigines Day, 12 July 1971.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Torres Strait Islander Flag

The Torres Strait Islander flag was designed by the late Bernard Namok as a symbol of unity and identity for Torres Strait Islanders.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

In 1995, both of these flags became official flags of Australia.

Source of information:   INDIGENOUS AUSTRALIAN FLAGS

In order to share some of the stories from the many peoples of Australia, below are a series of embedded You Tube videos sharing Dreaming stories. Where I can, I have added personal photos or drawings relating to the stories if students want to use them. At the end of this post you will find a video looking at indigenous tourism in Australia (52:26min).

Dreaming Stories

1. About Dreaming Stories  (7:32 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

This is a draft video for the Australian Museum for their Dreaming Stories. The performers are Gumaroy Newman, Eric Arthur Tamwoy and Norm Barsah. Video by Fintonn Mahony, Lisa Duff, Bronwyn Turnbull and Gina Thomson.

2.  Aboriginal Dreaming story of Waatji Pulyeri (the Blue Wren or superb fairywren) (5:33 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

These small wrens often visit my garden searching for insects. The drawing is of a male. Females and juveniles are plain brown.

 

3. The Rainbow Serpent  (11:23 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Rainbow lorikeets are native to my area and regularly visit my garden.

4. Mirram The Kangaroo and Warreen The Wombat (4:32 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

A species of kangaroo common to my area is the eastern grey kangaroo.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Although mainly nocturnal, I found this wombat out during the day.

4. Girawu The Goanna  (4:00 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

One of our local goannas.

5. Biladurang The Platypus  (2:58 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The platypus, a monotreme (egg laying) mammal, can be elusive. I have caught glimpses of them in mountain streams but don't have a photograph.

6. Tiddalick The Frog  (2:43 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

7. Wayambeh The Turtle (2:43 min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Snapper turtle at a local animal sanctuary.

The Aboriginal People of Australia

Many people think there was one Aboriginal (native Australian) culture and one language but, before the coming of European colonists, there were many, many of those cultures now lost. One of the best sites I have seen comes from the Yolngu people of Ramingining in the northern part of Central Arnhem Land in Australia’s Northern Territory.

For one of their creation stories, click the link Twelve Canoes and wait for the site to load. The picture below will appear. Once loaded, click on the picture indicated by the arrow to see a creation story.

This graphic should not be copied.

I think you will find many interesting things on this site as well as one of their creation stories.

Indigenous Tourism in Australia Today (52:26min)

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

3 Comments

Battalion Hawk Bloggers have prepared a post on their marionettes...

Presenting...our GLOBAL Marionettes!

Hello Battalion Hawk Bloggers,

I was very impressed when I saw your Global Marionette presentation. With 200 nations in our world, it can be hard to decide which countries to represent and/or study but you have chosen four very interesting countries of a most certainly global nature. Here are our world's seven continents in their order from largest to smallest area and the countries you have chosen...

Asia - India - Often said to be the Indian sub-continent because it had once been separate but continental drift had it collide into Asia and caused the rise of the Himalayan mountains.

Public Domain graphic sourced through Wikimedia Commons

Public Domain graphic sourced through Wikimedia Commons

Flag of India

Nations of Asia table

Africa - Tunisia - The smallest North African nation.

Public Domain graphic sourced through Wikimedia Commons

Flag of Tunisia

List of sovereign states & dependent territories in Africa

North America - This is your home continent so you have it covered. You live there.

List of sovereign states and dependent territories in North America

South America - Peru - We have shared your studies on this country.

Public Domain graphic sourced through Wikimedia Commons

Public Domain graphic sourced through Wikimedia Commons

Flag of Peru

List of sovereign states and dependent territories in South America

Antarctica - This continent is international. While some countries, including Australia, lay claim to parts of it there are no real borders and no people living there permanently.

Europe - Ukraine - Once part of the former U.S.S.R., it is an independent nation.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Flag of Ukraine

 List of sovereign states and dependent territories in Europe

Australia - The only continent that is one country. I don't know of any national costume for Australia so clothing for a marionette could have many options. As well as the native Australians (Aborigines), Australians have many cultural backgrounds. My heritage before Australia is Scottish and English but I know my ancestors stretch across Europe, Africa and Asia. We are all in one big family.

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Flag of Australia

Types of Puppetry

All of the below embedded You Tube clips are not my work.

Since I was little, puppets have interested me so I carried out a little research through Wikipedia to see what kinds of puppets can be made. Here are the types and You Tube clips of some I found and I must admit I hadn't heard of all the listed types...

  • Black light puppet

Chelsea, Rayann and Rebecca from Battalion Hawk Bloggers were interested in black light puppetry. I explained black light (ultraviolet) puppetry doesn't need to be complicated. White paint or material can be used to make the puppets. Below is another black light puppet video from You Tube. The puppets are gloved hands with the people wearing black...

An ad has been playing on Australian television recently. It seems to be the actors in the ad are wearing fluorescent suits where colours can be turned off and on. They look like black light  puppets but may be black light/body puppets.

  • Bunraku puppet

  • Carnival or body puppet

  • Finger puppet

  • Sock puppet

  • Hand puppet or glove puppet

  • Human-arm puppet

  • Light curtain puppet

  • Marionette

Jayden and Joyce were interested in the goat marionette video so I've embedded another video clip, this time of a marionette clip from "The Sound of Music".

  • Marotte

  • Pull string puppet

  • Push puppet

  • Toy theatre

  • Rod puppet

  • Shadow puppet

  • Supermarionation

  • Ticklebug

  • Table top puppet

  • Ventriloquism dummy

  • Water puppet

  • Object Puppet

I've added another below because this type includes my favourite puppet you will see at the end of the post. This type is really two types combined.

  • Hand and Rod Puppet

Wikipedia Reference if you want to find out more....   Types of Puppetry

Can you see what type of puppets you made? Visit the "Types of Puppetry" link to read more.

Over the years I have made, used or seen a number of the puppet types. My classes have made finger, glove, shadow, sock and rod puppets. They can be sometimes messy to make but are always fun, especially when they're ready to use. 🙂

Recently, puppets have made it to big stage productions. Perhaps some of you have heard of the production, "War Horse". I find their puppets fascinating, particularly the adult horse, Joey. Below is a You Tube clip showing the ad for the production. Watch to see how puppets become "real" members of the stage show.

This is an embedded You Tube clip and is not my work.

Who or what is my favourite puppet? He is a hand and rod puppet you might know...

 

Christopher was asking about The Muppets and the number of types they used. Below are some more Muppet clips. You will see glove, glove and rod, and body puppets. Cane you see other types?

Body puppets start what once introduced The Muppet Show on television.

This clip shows glove puppets. At the end Kermit (glove and rod) appears.

And for another student who likes Elmo.

1 Comment

for Global Grade 3's original post...

The POWER of a FLATTENED Classroom

*Recently I have been adding "Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes." under my photos and graphics so schools can use them without worrying about copyright if they find them useful. If you see the message below photos, graphics, audio or video, you will know it is okay to use on your school blogs or class projects.

Hello Global Grade 3,

What a wonderful surprise to be honoured by your class in this way. It’s hard to believe my blogging adventures started only early in 2011. At that time I wouldn't have imagined how much blogging would become a part of my life or how many classes I would visit through blogging. Like many things in life, I saw something interesting and tried it out.

Zubayda – The sample of iron sand came from a place in New Zealand’s North Island known as Awakino. The Awakino River enters the Tasman Sea at this point. The heavy iron sands were washed down the river from volcanic areas upstream.  I was able to check slides from a visit to Awakino in 1983 and found a slide of the beach with the iron sands. Below is  can of the old slide. In summer, the beach is too hot to walk on so people walk along a small stream to get to the water’s edge.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Tre – The DVD was to show the sort of thing I make for schools and community groups. Almost every child in the school appeared in their production. I thought it might be fun for you to hear the Aussie accent and see the Aussie kids perform. For many years I used the iron sands when my classes were looking at magnetism. Because the sands don’t seem to rust, I was able to use them many times.

 

Cemre – I have been able to hold a real koala and have photographed and videoed them many times. They are cute looking but are only awake two or three hours a day. Below is a photo I took of Suzie. She lives at Potoroo Palace, an animal refuge near my home.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Nick – The pahoehoe is interesting. It crumbles into sand but, unlike the New Zealand sand, isn’t rich in iron. Did you know there are different types of lava?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lava

Dimitrios – The Australian flag has three major parts to it. The Union Jack is in the top left hand corner and shows our link with the United Kingdom. The five smaller stars on the right are known as the Southern Cross (or Crux to astronomers). While it can be seen in the northern hemisphere at some time in the year, it’s always in our night sky. I can use it to find south at night. The large star under the Union Jack is known as the Commonwealth Star. It has 7 points, one for each state and one for the Australian territories.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Constantine – When you look at flowing lava, you can tell what type it is by how it moves along. The pahoehoe moves along almost like thick honey whereas the a’a’ seems to be chunky and harder.

Jayden – I know how much fun it can be to receive a surprise package. The mystery of what it contains can be exciting.

Chris – The scree was an unusual find in a way. After finishing my tour into the crater, I found many pieces had been caught in my clothing. The way in to the Mt. Tarawera crater is a very steep scree slope. Each step I took in the deep scree was well over a metre long as I made my way down. This meant I didn’t really have to collect it, it caught a ride with me. The iron sand was from New Zealand. The black pahoehoe and a’a’ were from Hawaii. The photo below is already on this blog but I thought I would repeat it. The arrow points to people on the crater rim. You can see a break in the rim to the right of the people where people start down. About half way down the scree slope you can see a trail start. It's a great experience going down the very steep slope. With the deep scree, it's not very likely you would lose you footing but it would be a very long way to roll to the bottom.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

AJ – How many rocks? That would be hard as I have from tiny gemstones to a large and heavy lead/zinc sample. I suppose there might be between one and two hundred samples. The Australian and Canadian dollar are almost in parity (the same value) when I just checked.  $A1.00 = $C1.03 The a’a’ and pahoehoe came from the same area of what Hawaiians call The Big Island. The Big Island is really Hawaii but the whole island chain has taken the name. The samples came Kilaeua lava flows. I don’t have very much of either. Your samples were the third I have sent out, one to England, one to Wales and one to you. You will see the name of the iron sand beach in Zubayda’s reply.

Davis – The small school in the DVD ended up buying around 60 copies of the disks. The money I take in helps me make more for others. I don’t make a profit by what I do but I have to charge for some otherwise I couldn’t afford to make them. The project I am doing for a choir now involves a special DVD for girls in a dance school and a DVD and 2 CDs for the choir. The girls pay $5 for their DVD and the choir gets the DVD and 2CDs for $10.

My favourite? I have recordings I’ve made in schools back to 1982. Each holds a special place in my memory but my favourites are probably the big shows involving 15 schools. There are so many talented students and teachers around.

Obsidian is also known as volcanic glass. Magma with high amounts of silica (also in sand) can form obsidian if it cools quickly.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obsidian

Christopher – There have been many special designs of the Australian dollar but the basic design, and my favourite, is the kangaroo dollar. I agree, sulphur is interesting and easy to find in volcanic areas. It is one of the three major ingredients in making gunpowder. I like sulphur crystals but they need to be protected if they are to keep their shine. My crystal sample was gather, with permission of the owners, from a volcanic area near Rotorua. Rotorua has the smell of sulphur everywhere.

Chelsea – You probably already know the Canadian flag also once had the Union Jack on it before it became what it is today. It wouldn’t surprise me if one day Australia takes a new design. There are many people with suggested designs often including kangaroos and/or stars. What I have always found strange is out $1 coin is bigger than our $2 coin. It always seemed the $2 should have been the bigger.

Rayann – How long to make a movie? I haven’t really kept record of how long it can take but, to give you and example, it has taken me about 8 hours just to design the titles at the beginning and credits at the end for the latest DVD project and more to do the same for the two CDs. There are many other tasks involved but, as a rough guess, my latest project might take around 40 to 50 hours before I make a master DVD for copying.

In my reply to Zubayda, I have shown a picture of the iron sand beach at Awakino in New Zealand.

In my reply to Dimitrios, I discuss the Australian flag.

James – One interesting thing many don’t seem to know is Australia only became a nation in 1901. Before that there were British colonies under the names we now call our states. The states voted to form a commonwealth under the name Australia. The original 1901 flag had only a six pointed star. Our current flag didn't become official until 1934.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_flag

Joyce – The schools DVD was fun to make. They only phoned me the day before to ask if I could film their play as parents had asked for a copy after their first night. The next day I was there checking out the hall and setting up cameras. They didn’t use microphones so the sound was only from the cameras therefore the baby noises.

What was interesting about the box for me is they were all amongst my favourite things. I have a number of glove puppets I’ve used in class, many rock samples, some flags, 30 years of school videos and I have always liked the kangaroo $1.

Ben – Until we can send objects to people on line, we’ll always need snail mail to send gifts. I always enjoy making the DVDs. My most successful can sell around 200 copies but I also give some away for free just because I enjoy making them. Schools know I charge them nothing for small projects. Schools always get a free copy of anything I make for them.

Danny – I probably started collecting rocks when I was your age. I have always been interested in science so geology was just one subject area I explored. My science degree was really in zoology and psychology but I also studied some maths, botany and chemistry at university. I didn't have time to study geology and physics.

The obsidian was bought from a rock shop in New Zealand. I wasn’t able to find any in areas where you are allowed to take samples so rock shops are a great source of interesting ricks and fossils.

Lauren – The school on the DVD is in a small coastal town. It has a beautiful beach, small boat launching inlet, some rugged coastline and is between two national parks with beautiful scenery. I holidayed there as a child as did my mother when she was a girl and my grandfather when he was a boy. My mother’s side of my family has been in this area since 1847. The photo below is taken from a wharf and shows Tathra Beach in the background.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Ella – The koala puppet was bought in a local shop. I have another type of koala in my collection as well as a platypus, kookaburra, and cockatoo plus some non-Australian animals. My favourite local animal refuge has three koalas. I was able to film the first time Suzie’s baby poked its head out of Suzie’s pouch. They also sell Australian animal glove puppets.

Elijah – It wouldn’t be a good idea to use a’a’ as soap as it would be a little too scratchy, There is a volcanic stone I wasn’t able to send that can be used but not as soap. Pumice is a light volcanic stone. When superheated rock is thrown out and cools quickly, bubbles can form. Because of these many small bubbles, pumice is able to float in water. People can use it to rub calluses off their skin. I am out of samples at the moment or I would have included some.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pumice

Rebecca – When called in to film shows, I often don’t know what is going to happen. For the show in the DVD, I had no idea what would happen. I found it fun to watch. The only catch is I can be standing in the same spot for two hours while filming to make sure everything records well. Only when I edit the film on this computer do I have the chance to watch each act and cut out the bloopers or times when nothing is happening.

Tyler – Videoing in schools has been a part of my life since 1982. All the old videotapes are now on DVD so I have 30 years of school history recorded on them. Looking at the 1982 video, it can be hard to believe cute little 5 year old Nathan and Jenny would now be 35 years old. There are many memories stored in my DVDs, slides, negatives and photos. I hope to eventually have all stored on computers so they won’t be lost. J

For the class…

Do YOU know the significance of the six stars on the Australian flag? What do the symbols on YOUR flag represent?

(My reply for Dimitrios)  The Australian flag has three major parts to it. The Union Jack is in the top left hand corner and shows our link with the United Kingdom. The five smaller stars on the right are known as the Southern Cross (or Crux to astronomers). While it can be seen in the northern hemisphere at some time in the year, it’s always in our night sky. I can use it to find south at night. The large star under the Union Jack is known as the Commonwealth Star. It has 7 points, one for each state and one for the Australian territories.

Do you have a national bird, or flower or animal?

Australia

Flower – Golden Wattle

I didn't have a photo of the golden wattle in my collection but here is a photo of a similar wattle.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Bird – emu

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Mammal – kangaroo

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The three emblems appear of Australia’s Coat of Arms.

This is not my graphic. It was sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

As well as national emblems, each state has its own emblems.

Floral emblems of Australia…

http://www.kidcyber.com.au/topics/emblemsAust.htm

Animal emblems of Australia…

http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/journal/australias-animals-emblems.htm

Bird emblems of Australia…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Australian_bird_emblems

Do you have a favourite rock, mineral or fossil sample in YOUR collection? What makes it your favourite?

My favourite is crystal pyrite. It has the colour of gold and is also known as fool’s gold. It is much prettier than gold although worth very little. It’s easy to tell the difference. Hit a sample with a stone. If it flattens, it’s gold. If it shatters into little pieces, it’s pyrite.

Pyrite is iron sulphide. Here is a sample from my collection. It comes from Northern Territory in Australia. I have seen very beautiful examples from Italy. It measures 6cm across and weighs 250g.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Pyrite is often found mixed in with other minerals. Below is a photo of lead/zinc ore from Tasmania. You can see the golden coloured pyrite at the top of the sample. The sample weighs 2500g mainly because of its lead content.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

@RossMannell

Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia