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Understanding By Design Unit Template

Title of Unit

Grade Level

Curriculum Area

Time Frame

Developed By

Identify Desired Results (Stage 1)
Content Standards

Understandings Essential Questions
Overarching Understanding Overarching Topical

Related Misconceptions

Students will know
Students will be able to

Vowels As Colors - Gloria Deo
September 2014-December 2014
Adam Kishbauch
1.1.8.B.1 Analyze the application of the elements of music in diverse Western and non-Western musical works from different historical eras using active listening and by
reading and interpreting written scores.
1.3.8.B.1 Perform instrumental or vocal compositions using complex standard and non-standard Western, non-Western, and avant-garde notation.
1.3.8.B.2 Perform independently and in groups with expressive qualities appropriately aligned with the stylistic characteristics of the genre.
1.3.8.B.3 Apply theoretical understanding of expressive and dynamic music terminology to the performance of written scores in the grand staff.
Encounter (experiential): Singing a piece in Latin.
Understand (cognitive): By the end of this lesson, students will apply their knowledge of
vowels and how they affect intonation in rehearsals and performances.
Construct meaning (constructivist): As a result of this lesson, students will hear vowels in
a different way through color charts as well as comparing vowels of choral performances of
Latin works to modern performances of songs with differing vowel modication.
How will students convey the
meaning of the text through
In what ways will students connect
their world of music to make their
performance of "Gloria Deo" relevant
and meaningful?
In what ways will students: self
monitor their vowel modication?
How will students make meaning of
vowel modication so that they may
identify when unied and modied
vowels are needed in a choral setting?
- The American speaking diction is often employed in young singers. Because the Latin language has
straightfoward interpretations of vowels, it is not enough to simply shape the vowels as we speak.
- The text of the piece should not be overlooked. Teaching the translation will help students connect better
to the similarities and cognates of the language, which will help stufents feel more comfortable modifying
words they think they do not know.
(behavioral): By the end of this lesson, students in the HMS Concert Choir Small
group class will be able to modify vowels for blended tone quality and diction when performing
with a success rate of 80%.
(behavioral): By the end of this lesson, students in the HMS Concert Choir Small
group class will be able to recite the translation of the Latin text when asked to do so with a success
rate of 80%.
Assessment Evidence (Stage 2)
Performance Task Description






Other Evidence

Learning Plan (Stage 3)
Where are your students headed? Where have
they been? How will you make sure the
students know where they are going?

How will you hook students at the beginning of
the unit?

What events will help students experience and
explore the big idea and questions in the unit?
How will you equip them with needed skills and

How will you cause students to reflect and
rethink? How will you guide them in rehearsing,
revising, and refining their work?

How will you help students to exhibit and self-
evaluate their growing skills, knowledge, and
understanding throughout the unit?

How will you tailor and otherwise personalize
the learning plan to optimize the engagement
and effectiveness of ALL students, without
compromising the goals of the unit?

How will you organize and sequence the
learning activities to optimize the engagement
and achievement of ALL students?

From: Wiggins, Grant and J. Mc Tighe. (1998). Understanding by Design, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
To determine whether students can differentiate between vocal styles (ex. Latin versus pop)
- Limited exposure to singing pieces in Latin. 8th graders sang one piece in Latin last Spring. The 8th graders are aware of Mrs. Szabo's color
wheel and can identify which vowels represent which color consistently. generally favor pop music, though there are some students who enjoy
musical theatre. I intend to use discussion to help compare music styles. The goal is to bring the music to performance level for concert
Introduction to color wheel. Listening critically to a familiar contemporary song and comparing with a chamber
choir. (partner)
- Students will listen to multiple clips of pieces in order to apply their knowlege of vowel modication to songs they know and enjoy.
- Students will pair up often to assess and help each other with singing techniques unique to the piece
- students will translate the text and do exercises that help them convey the message of the piece in english. (present)
the above experiences will have components that allow students to bring what they know of music and text into the world of this
piece. Through short discussions, students will be able to share their opinions and reections with the class, making all knowlege
accessible to each student. In addition, frequent peer-checks in rehearsal will have students revising their classmates performances.
A self-evaluation will help students reect on their own skills and how they have been changing them over time. For homework,
students will be asked to record themselves singing the opening phrase of the piece and decide what has improved and what they
wish to improve through short written reection.
Rehearsal Plan Honors the tenets of Critical Pedagogy for Music Education: Partner, Present, Personalize, and Perform.
I have chosen to let students use a comparitive song from their own playlists so that they can see how the lesson
as a whole is relevant to their lives. In addition, allowing the students to perform for their peers or the class will
give them a chance to be in the spotlight so that they are aware that working on their individual performances
affects the class. (personalize)
Students will meet the ensemble benchmarks in the National Core Music Standards for creating, performing, responding, and connecting for their grade level
HMS Choir (at rehearsals), Audience of family, peers, and Faculty (performance)
Weekly Choral Rehearsal and weekly small group lesson
Students will Perform this piece in an upcoming concert
Students will act as performers and evaluators (through self and peer assessment),
Formative: Peer monitoring/mirror singing to identify vowel improvement. Assessing understanding through questioning, clarifying, and summarizing.
Summative: Students will perform in a December concert with accuracy of vowel formation, diction, and intonation. In addition, students will reect on how their perspective on the piece has changed
Integrative: Teacher Reects on effectiveness of lesson through blogging. Teacher will answer the following questions: 1. What challenges in the music did I miss that became apparent during rehearsals?