This is the 50th anniversary of “Singing In The Rain” and the 100th birthday for its star, Gene Kelly!! Use this anniversary to do a video survey of the movie, which is a classic! You may have to help your students understand certain parts but, they will love it!! Once you have watched the movie, have students create fun fact lists in your computer lab.
Example: many of the characters were based on real people:
- Lena Lamont was based on the actress Norma Talmadge
- Gene Kelly made the iconic “Singing In The Rain” number while battling the flu with a 105 temperature!!
What did your students have to say about the movie?
Now that students have created their movement piece about their hero, have them present to each other. To further advance the meaning, have students bring in an artifact that represents their hero (like a picture or an object). Students will lean towards people that are not living. Express to them the hero can still be living AND the dances can be happy! Whatever the hero or dance, the purpose is to convey meaning!! Use the peer evaluation as a tool to edit and re-edit the dances. Once this has taken place, record the dances and have students do a self evaluation:
Did the piece convey the intended meaning? Was the movement story clear?
Have fun & be creative!!!
Have students brainstorm about their personal hero. Is it their parents, classmate, pet, someone from pop culture? Whoever it is- it’s OK! Have students write an essay explaining their choice- what makes them special? How have they impacted their life? Do they have any special personality traits or funny habits?
My example to my students: I used to have a dance teacher that used to take a picture of herself in a bikini every year on her birthday (she did this until she was 80).
Because she always wanted to be honest about her body.
Students will select music that represents the essay and create a movement piece!!
Who did your students pick as their hero? Who is your hero and what would your movement piece include?
According to all of the studies by the American Association of Pediatrics and others, our nation is facing an epidemic of childhood obesity!! How do we fix it?! Our children need a combination of diet and exercise; our first line of defense is to make this part of the school day. Students will embrace this combination when it seems relevant to where they “live” today. As teachers, the sooner we master this notion the quicker we will get to the heart of the issue. Why not try to use the influences of today’s media to get students engaged quicker? Over the next few months I will provide a variety of tools to get your kids up and movin’!