Critical Listening & Evaluation Instructions (p.56)
In today’s hectic and busy environment, children often do not get the opportunity to develop the skill of critical listening. Additionally, much of the popular music today does not include the complex harmonies that were a part of the music composed during the history of classical music, diminishing a child’s ability to reproduce even simple pitches in a familiar melody.
At the same time, listening to classical music is highly enjoyable and relaxing, and students can enjoy the Creative Afternoons CD while developing the very important skills of critical listening and evaluation. They can also simultaneously develop the art of identifying pitches in a melody. The
Critical Listening and Evaluation exercise helps develop these important abilities, and it sharpens
aural skills by encouraging conscientious listening and by stimulating decision-making skills.
To begin this activity, select works by Lully, Purcell, and Couperin listed below for students to listen
to from the Creative Afternoons CD and ask them to write down the selections they enjoyed the
Minuet in D Minor, by Jean-Baptiste Lully (Track 21)
Trumpet Tune, by Henry Purcell (Track 18)
Carnival Scene, by François Couperin (Track 25)
After the students have listened to the CD and have written down their favorite music selections,
have them respond to the sentences on the following page using the pieces that they enjoyed to
supply the information.
On a separate sheet of paper, ask students to write either a poem or short essay that is inspired
from the listening activity.
© Karen Walwyn