August 24, 2016

Camp Themes

Each theme’s lessons and activities are described in detail in the Curriculum Guide. Currently, only the Spaced Out! theme is available for purchase (click here), and themes from prior summers will be available soon.

Spaced Out Logo
The Spaced Out! theme, takes students on a musical journey through outer space, studying the music of Gustav Holst, and folk songs from around the world.

The curriculum teaches campers and audience members about the Voyager satellites launched in 1970, each containing a gold disk with songs and pictures from Earth to teach beings on other planets what life is like on Earth. The closing ceremony includes a parody of a 1938 radio broadcast that made listeners believe the world was being invaded by space aliens. In truth, the broadcast was the radio station’s Halloween prank: a dramatic reading of Orson Wells’ War of the Worlds. For the Camp Granada closing ceremony, the premise is that the golden recorders on Voyager reached Pluto where life forms on Pluto liked the music so much, they wanted to come to earth to hear some more.

Younger campers will perform an English folk story, The Strange Visitor, adding sound effects with voices and instruments, and will perform Sally Go Round the Sun with movement and non-pitched percussion. The middle group will perform a rhythm-stick and body-percussion accompaniment of Funga Alafia, a Nigerian greeting song (to welcome our visitors from Pluto), and will use boomwhackers to accompany Aiken Drum. The older campers will perform a French folk song, Au Clair de la Lune (by moonlight) on recorders and pitched percussion, The Car Song using non-traditional instruments to sound like a ratty space-ship about to fall apart, and will compose an improvisation piece using pitched percussion as a song for Pluto. All campers will also sing Sorida, a welcome song from Zimbabwe, and our Camp Granada theme song, Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah.

In Connections class, younger campers will make a satellite-kazoo from a recycled toilet-paper tube, and a UFO ocean drum from paper plates. Older campers will create a self-portrait as if they are floating away in space. All campers will create a craft project to learn about Gustav Holst’s The Planets, design their own alien using spray foam, and will make their own solar system in the style of Eric Carle.

To purchase the Spaced Out! theme, visit the Rowman and Littlefield website (click here).

Coming Summer 2017 to Austin Peay State University


Unplugged Logo
Long before the invention of the radio, and around the world today where technology is not available, people have gathered with instruments and voices to entertain themselves after a hard day’s work, or to pass the time on long, cross-country trips. This year’s theme will take campers back in time and around the world to discover the ways in which children and adults have entertained themselves without relying on technology. The lessons encourage campers to unplug from their listening devices, and make their own music through play, creativity, and movement.

Campers will participate in traditional songs and games including tiniking sticks from the Philippines, a Dutch top-spinning song (Sarasponda), rock-passing song-games from Ghana (Obwisana) and America (Down by the Banks), and many more. Campers will also learn how composers have used traditional songs like these as starting points for many of the world’s best known orchestral pieces. Finally, campers will make their own versions of folk instruments, and will learn to accompany themselves using their voices, bodies, folk-toys, home-made instruments, and every-day house-hold items.

Black Out Logo
Black Out
The Black Out theme teaches night-time musical and artistic concepts including nocturnes (night pieces), night-time landscapes, and games that simulate being in the dark, relying on sound rather than sight.

The curriculum includes children’s and traditional songs that are traditionally sung around a camp fire. The youngest students will perform an instrumental accompaniment to Robert Munch’s book Mortimer as the teacher reads the story about a boy who does not want to go to sleep. The middle age group will learn about a Debussy nocturne, Clouds, and perform an ensemble arrangement of Star Light Star Bright as their own nocturne to perform as the teacher reads It Looked Like Spilled Milk, by Charles Shaw. The oldest students will learn an ensemble arrangement of a Japanese folk song, Firefly.

Crafts and other activities in Connections classes will reinforce music’s association with art and movement. Younger campers will make a cloud craft to accompany their performance of Debussy’s Clouds. Younger campers will also make cave art based on We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Helen Oexnbury and Michael Rosen. The older students will create an improvisation piece entitled Cage of the Winds based on Cave of the Winds by Russell Peck. All students will create their own version of Van Gogh’s Starry Night, create a fire-fly craft, and recreate ancient cave drawings using sand and glue.