Choral Demo Lesson Help

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    Hello everyone. I just got called for an interview and demo lesson next week, but I never had to give a demo lesson before! I was asked to teach an intermediate/advanced high school chorus. Has anyone had experience with this? Should I ask for the student’s names or would that take away from the lesson? Any recommendations on song literature? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I am confident in my ability to teach, but am worried about what to teach in such a short amount of time – I have about 45 minutes.

    Thank you!


    Middle/High School can be fun – but don’t worry about names. I recommend a folk song which can be sung in three parts called “Yonder Come Day.”
    Here it is in solfege: yonder come day (sol-sol mi sol) day is a-breakin’ (la la-la sol mi) yonder come day (sol-sol mi sol) oh my soul (fa re ti-do) yonder come day, day is a-breakin’ (same notes) the sun is a-risin (mi la-la sol mi) in my soul (do mi-sol).
    Part II: Yonder (sol mi-sol) – repeat.
    Here is a better copy:

    First do a choral warm-up. Have them stretch, do some slow, deep breathing (with my little guys we do “weight lifters” – hands on knees, lift arms and breathe in, then breathe out and put arms down). Nee on sol-fa-mi-re-do Start high – say C above Middle C as do – and descend keys.
    Then have them echo the words; speak them in rhythm. Next add the melody, echo that. …. Consider giving them a score. At this stage they should be able to read music. This will give them a visual of the piece and if they don’t read, have them study the direction of the melody and the rhythm. Even if you give them a score, have them echo phrases just to make sure kids get it. …. once they get the parts, break them up and have them stand with their parts. Sing thru twice. To add another level of fun and interest, add claps or a tambourine on beats 2 and 4!

    Before this — or whichever song you end up choosing — you might do a rhythm or note-reading review game to make sure they are on the same page. One game I have had success with this year is a dice game. I printed paper dice off the web, covered the numbers and copied again, then I drew in notes and rests (two dice for each). Kids rolled a rhythm, had another kid write it on the board and the class performed it on drums. In your case, you may just have them clap patterns.
    Hope that helps – good luck!!

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