Package 4-1: Creative arts – Movie music

Your child will participate in a lesson where they will consider how characters in movies can be represented by music.

Week 5 - Package 1 - Year 5 & 6 Creative arts - Movie music

Things your child will need

Have these things available so your child can complete this task.


  • Computer

  • Paper, pen or pencil

  • Textas coloured pencils

  • YouTube links (included below)

  • A recording program or app

Back up

  • Smartphone

Before your child starts

Things to think about:

  • Are there particular movies that your child is familiar with that contain music related to a particular character?

  • What sounds are related to particular members of your household?

  • Has your child ever experimented with compositions or using recording facilities on a device such as a computer or phone?

What your child needs to do

  1. Ask your child to consider how characters in movies can be represented by music. In movies, composers often use different instruments, rhythm and melody to ‘paint’ musical pictures, called themes or motifs of characters.

  2. Talk with your child about John Williams who is a renowned modern film composer, well-known for using musical themes and motifs to represent characters in movies. Discuss examples of his compositions for movies such as ‘Star Wars’, ‘Raiders of the Lost Arc’, ‘Jurassic Park’, ‘Home Alone’, ‘E.T’, ‘Hook’ and ‘Harry Potter’.

  3. Ask your child to choose 4 characters from the selection of ‘Star Wars’ or ‘Harry Potter’ character motifs included below and identify what musical features capture the main aspects of that character. Click on the characters from the list below:

Star Wars

Harry Potter

What your child can do next

  1. Watch this video of Andrew Huang (click on the link) composing using the sounds of a much-loved character, a guide dog. In this piece sounds are based upon sounds related to his friend’s life as a visually impaired person.

  2. Ask your child to think about someone that is special to them. Ask your child to create a list of the sounds related to them such as their walk, their shoes, a laugh, a cough, their phone ringtone, cooking, jewellery clinking, coughing and so on.

  3. Ask your child to use these sounds in a composition. There are many ways to do this such as imitating the sounds themselves, recording the sounds using voice memo, GarageBand, recording apps such as Loopy HD, a website such as ‘Soundtrap’ or using the actual sounds from the person themselves.

Options for your child

Activity too hard?

Listen to the sounds of one character and discuss together.

Activity too easy?

Create and record a composition using a range of sample sounds to represent several characters.

Extension/additional activity

Prepare a statement about who or what the composition is about and why they chose the sounds or musical concepts that they did. Create compositions about other characters.

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