Critical Listening at Jan Moran Learning Library

January 21, 2018

The youth of Jan Moran Collier City Learning Library went on a critical listening and self-expression journey. The youth created paintings and poems to express their holiday excitement.

The projects started with a session of critically listening to 10 songs, each of different styles and genres. The youth wrote what was most attention-grabbing, how the music made them feel and their honest opinions about whether they liked or disliked the song. The students were challenged to listen closely and critique individual elements of each production like instrumentation, vocal performance and song subject matter.

Teaching Artist Sienyi Cambridge made the following comments:

“I believe the kids really enjoyed this exercise. They were introduced to new music and sounds that they’ve never heard before, they analyzed them, and decided whether they liked it or not. The kids not only analyzed the songs but they were anxious to share the ideas that came to mind when they heard the music. This exercise helped expand the children’s creativity because you can hear how elaborate their ideas and thoughts on each song became. They slowly became more open-minded towards new music and the possibilities of what they could do with the music.”

During the following session, the students had a chance to express their creativity by pairing their painting and poetry skills as they listened to chill-out trip-hop instrumentals. The youth were encouraged to paint what they felt from the music in the moment. The youth presented their projects to teachers, parents and caregivers during their holiday celebrations.

Blog post by Teaching ArtistGerald “Nova Sound” Campbell