Jazz in the Middle

8th Grade

Jazz in the Middle

Jazz & The American Spirit

Jazz & The American Spirit is designed to help 8th grade students understand the resiliency of the American spirit and how that spirit was reflected in the evolution of jazz.

The one-week residency project is divided into five one-hour sessions. The program is lead by guest artists in jazz and improvisational theater. Students explore the American Revolution, the Civil War, The Great Depression, WWII, and the Civil Rights Era through a series of hands-on jazz-focused, standards-based interactive exercises.

Students create music, learn to improvise, generate stories, learn about musical forms, participate in improv storytelling, create art, respond to poetry, and perform solos. The final day consists of a performance that highlights what students have learned throughout the residency.

The one-week program can be implemented in either 8th grade Social Studies or Language Arts classrooms.

Sessions Overview:

Day 1: The American Revolution/Visual Arts/Call & Response
Day 2: The Civil War & Reconstruction/Creating Songs
Day 3: The Great Depression & WWII/Mood & Musical Interactions
Day 4: The Civil Rights Era/Poetic Expressions
Day 5: World Music/ A Celebration of Jazz