Early Stage 1 to Stage 3
The NSW Creative Arts K-6 Syllabus involves the four art forms of dance, drama, music and visual arts. All four art forms have their own learning experiences and outcomes for each stage from Early Stage 1-3.
Each art form involves unique practices for students to develop subject specific knowledge, skills and understanding.
Dance involves performing, composing and appreciating through the elements of action, dynamics, time, space, relationships and structure. Through sequenced dance activities students learn to use these elements effectively and to appreciate the meaning and values that dance offers personally, culturally and as a form of communication.
Performing involves students developing expressive qualities, formal qualities and sensory qualities to interpret ideas and communicate through dance.
Composing involves students developing understandings in dance, movement, sound and physical settings in response to stimuli and using the elements of dance.
Appreciating gives students an opportunity to analyse, value and reflect on dance with their own personal, cultural and structural meaning.
Drama involves students making, performing and appreciating though various roles, dramatic contexts, elements and forms. It is best delivered when the learning experiences are integrated.
Making allows students to develop skills in playwriting, role-playing and other situations. This involves using the elements of dramatic tension, contrast, symbol, time, space, focus and mood through the dramatic forms of:
- reader’s theatre
- video drama
- play building.
Performing gives students an opportunity to practise their skills and critically evaluate that of their peers and others, including professionals.
Appreciating offers students an opportunity to consider live and on-screen dramatic works, of themselves and others, through viewing, talking, reading and writing about the works.
Music involves performing, organising sound and listening through the concepts of duration, pitch, dynamics, tone colour and structure – using a variety of different musical styles in a sequential manner.
Performing allows students to develop their understanding of musical concepts through singing, playing and moving.
Organising sound involves students learning about the process of the composing and arranging music through a range of activities such as improvisation, experimentation, imitation and notation.
Listening allows students to develop an understanding of how an audience interacts with music and how to distinguish the presence and types of sound through a knowledge of musical concepts.
Tuneful trash part 1 – Introduction: creating tuneful trash
Students are engaged in using ‘junk’ found around their school to create their own instruments with their teacher Jade Myers. They investigate the potential sounds of found materials and experiment with different techniques of putting them together and playing to create a variety of instrumental tone colours (timbres). With teacher guidance and research, many improvements are made as part of this journey.
Tuneful trash part 2 – Introduction to organising sound
In this video (2:42 minutes) Phil Rees OAM listens to the instruments the students have made and begins to construct a story based upon the tone colours of the student created instruments. Discussions centre around the way sounds are produced and familiar aspects within the students’ experiences.
These instrumental timbres begin to start a story in motion that will guide the organising sound or compositional process.
Tuneful trash part 3: Listening and performing
This video (2:17 minutes) discusses ways of beginning the organising sound process. Students are guided through a process of singing, saying, then playing using student created sentences as chants. They then reinforce these sentences as rhythms through movement. The final step is transferring these rhythms to their self-made instruments.
Through listening to each other and varying performances within their classroom, the students solidify their compositions. They further explore the musical concept of dynamics (volume) as a way of enhancing their piece.
Tuneful trash part 4: Musical concepts explained
In this video (4:43 minutes), the students are further engaged in enhancing their compositions through the learning experiences of listening, performing and organising sound in conjunction with the musical concepts of duration, pitch, dynamics, structure and tone colour. The flexibility of the process of organising sound through creating Tuneful Trash is reinforced throughout.
Tone colour (timbre) is reinforced as a musical concept through discussions of the instruments created, the sounds that they make and how the sounds are produced. The instruments are grouped according to the sounds they produce and their role in telling a part of the musical story in their class composition.
Structure is discussed as an informal way of putting the students’ compositional ideas together to create a piece. It is important to note that at this stage it is not necessary to fit in with traditional and more formal musical structures, but to think of ways in which musical ideas can be put together.
Duration is introduced as the beat (pulse), the rhythm (patterns), the tempo (speed), silence (rests), repetition, and metres (grouping of the beats). The links to mathematics are clear and strong.
Pitch is the highness or lowness of the notes and the changes in between. Activities with students such as tracing the melodic contour with hands or objects such as a parachute are great ways to demonstrate the movement of pitch.
Graphic notation is discussed as a way for students to record their musical compositions. This can take the form of a score that shows symbols and timings etc. This can eventually lead to more formal and traditional musical scores.
Visual arts involves making various art forms such as painting, drawing, digital media and so on, as well as appreciating various artists, artworks and audiences.
Making allows students to develop skills using a broad range of techniques through an exploration of subject matter with an increasing awareness of their intentions as artists.
Appreciating involves students responding to artists and their artworks, often as members of a global audience – talking and thinking about art within and beyond their own region and culture.