A message from our music staff:

Mr. Berger and Ms. Dudlak are glad you're here! Check back often for updates and info about our Westgate music program. Mr. Berger can be reached via email at gberger@sd25.org, and Ms. Dudlak can be reached at jdudlak@sd25.org. Follow Mr. Berger on Twitter! @WEMusic160

Friday, October 23, 2015

A little Renaissance Music... in Music Class

This week, in continuing our discussion of Sea Shanty music, we listened to a piece called "Bransle de la Torche" by late renaissance composer Michael Praetorius. It is in a call & response style, much like our sea shanties. Mr. Berger shared a few video clips of this type of music being performed on instruments of that period, including recorders and the harpsichord.

There is a talented musician from Brazil named Eduardo Antonello who has a channel dedicated to early music, but with a modern technological twist. He also incorporated visual art into his videos, which is a great cross-curricular connection!
Listed below are a few of the videos we viewed in class.

The Sailor's Hornpipe

Bransle de la Torche

La Canarie- Praetorius (Love this one! It even has recorders!)

Have a great weekend!

Mr. Berger ./`

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Fourth Grade Concert Information

Our first concert of the year is fast approaching! Please see the attached letter for all of the details! I have also added it to the "Important Music Documents" page. 

Fourth Grade Concert Parent Letter

Contact Mr. Berger or Mrs. Clark with any questions.

See you there!!

Mr. Berger ./`

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

SPPRAK comes to Westgate again!

"If you catch someone showing any kindness at all, just fill out a post-it and put it on the wall!"

Our PTA launched the annual SPPRAK program this week! Here's a quick video by our district publicity guru, Adam Harris. It was a blast leading the students in our SPPRAK Rap!

SPPRAK YouTube Video

Friday, October 16, 2015

Music This Week...

Greetings and Happy Autumn!

Here's a quick update on what we've been up to in Music class this week...

Kindergarten: We enjoyed learning "Pumpkin Stew", a song in a minor key. The kids each shared ideas for ingredients,  and Mr. Berger used the mimio to add it to the 'stew pot' on the board. A few favorites were Marshmallows, Chocolate, Carrots, and Mint! Next week we add some Orff accompaniment to our singing!


First Grade: We continued a song about Columbus Day called "Who Stowed Away?", and students had opportunity to sing solo, and play a bordun pattern on bass xylophones and metallophones. We also reviewed "Charlie Over the Water"- a sol-mi song, and added Orff as well.

Second grade: We discussed melodic direction- how pitches move by steps, skips, or repeats, and learned a River Shanty song called "Down the Ohio". We even began the dance that accompanies the song!

Third grade and 3/4 multi-age: We learned an assessment song, Telephone Time, and also learned the fun shanty, "John Kanaka", along with the partner dance that goes with it.

Fourth grade: These students continue working hard on their concert music! We added our recorder pieces and reviewed all of our other songs. Be sure those recorders are here for music class from now until the concert on Thursday, November 5th.

Fifth grade: Our Sea Chanty unit is in full swing! Students experienced different types of sea chanties, including the Short-Haul, Capstan, Long-Haul, and Forecastle. We also learned and sang "Walkin' Down the Street", a song to be used as a vocal assessment in the near future.  Below is a link to a video I shared of a capstan chanty in action. You only need to view the first minute or so to get the idea! Chanties are lot's of fun, and are part of our musical history. Enjoy!

Paddy Lay Back Capstan Chanty

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Halloween Reminder Information~

From the Westgate Main Office~

Halloween Reminders!

  • All school lunch period: 12:30PM to 1:30PM.
  • Students leaving for lunch may not return to school until 1:25PM (Doors will not open until 1:30PM.)
  • At 1:30PM students returning to school may enter the building through the Main Doors (Door #1) or the Primary Doors (Door #2). Students will not be let in the building prior to 1:30PM!
  • Parents may not prepare “goodie bags” to be passed out to students at school.
  • At Westgate, Halloween costumes promoting excessive violence, sharp objects, weapons, and unnecessary gore will not be allowed at both the parade and party.
  • Halloween Parade starts at 1:45PM (A SchoolMessenger will be sent out at noon announcing cancellation of the parade or the reduction of the parade route.)
  • Kindergarten families please refer to your teacher’s letter for details and information regarding Halloween at Westgate.