Autumn

The first of six cross-curricular lesson plans on Autumn and Fall for Primary or Elementary School children using songs and animations, poetry analysis and writing, music analysis, instrument making, art projects and play ideas.


Autumn
Animation by Paula Downes, music by Andrew Downes, poetry by Florence Hoatson.


The Poem:
Yellow the bracken,
Golden the sheaves,
Rosy the apples,
Crimson the leaves;
Mist on the hillside,
Clouds grey and white.
Autumn, good morning!
Summer, good night! 



About the poetry
Watch the following videos to learn what happens during Autumn in the UK:




Poetry Analysis
Search for rhyming words, colours, nouns, adjectives, check the children understand what mist is. Discuss the meaning of the last two lines?




Poetry Writing
Brainstorm all the nouns, adjectives (including colours), and events associated with Autumn/Fall.

Ask the children to select words that rhyme from the brainstorm.

Ask them them to write a poem with the same rhyming structure as the poem in the song.



Music Analysis
Watch the following videos of instruments so they can be easily recognised in the song:


Trumpet:


Flute:


Plucked Strings (pizzicato):


Bowed Strings (arco):


Cymbals:


Piano:



Now listen to the song again:
- Notice the solo trumpet playing the vocal melody at the beginning as an introduction.
- Next listen to the piano arpeggios and plucked strings accompanying the voice.
- Listen out for the trumpet countermelody at 'Rosy'.
- The flute then takes the melody accompanied by arpeggios in bowed strings with an occasional piano countermelody.
- 'Mist on the hillside' is accompanied by piano arpeggios, cymbal crashes and flute and trumpet countermelodies.
- There then follows an interlude with warm bowed and plucked strings with piano arpeggios.
-Finally we return to the first four lines of the poem. The music is the same as before, but now we have a violin (bowed strings) and trumpet countermelody, cymbal crashes and flute interjections.
-The flute and piano have the last say.


Leaf Play
- Collect leaves and try to identify the trees they come from.
- Notice the different colours.
- Sweep them into a pile, build a den or a maze, jump in them, notice and identify the mini beasts underneath them.
- Collect lots of different types of leaves, conkers, sticks, pine cones and anything else you can find in a bag for the art projects below.

Create musical instruments:
- Bash conkers together
- Rustle/crumple leaves with fingers or feet 
- Stamp through the leaves in time
- Break sticks
- Run a stick or finger over a pine cone or rub two pine cones together
- Run a stick over the bark of a tree
- Bite into an apple
- Record these beautiful sounds


Art Projects
- Create a beautiful collage of leaves, conkers, sticks, pine cones and anything else you can find.
- Paint the underside of leaves different colours and then turn them over and press them down on some white paper to create leaf prints. Then stick your painted leaves on another piece of paper to create a collage.
- Paint some pine cones, see what kinds of patterns you can create on white paper with them.

Move on to Carnival


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