Albert Einstein Academy Blog

Dear Parents,

Welcome to your Albert Einstein Academy Weekly Report Blog!

Here you will learn about all that we have covered with your wonderful children during the week.  This blog is updated weekly.  Please check periodically for the updates.

Please note: NO REFUNDS are issued after the program has started and no make ups or pro-rate are offered if a child misses a class.

March 6, 2018 - HIP HOP - We began class with stretching and warm-up activities. We then proceeded to practice our choreographies. The students did well remembering all the steps, as we worked toward reinforcing our dance routines so that the students can memorize the moves and perform on their own without the help of the teacher. For the longer routine, we put the older kids in the front row so that he younger ones can watch them in case they forgot some of the steps. I like to encourage students to watch each other to remember the moves, s that they practice teamwork and helping each other. We finished off with a dance game as our cool-down activity. This was the last class session on our winter term, but the children are welcome to take the class again when we begin the spring term later this month.

MARCH 5, 2108 -Acting Class

Tongue Twisters – Actors work on articulator warm up drills Flee, Fly, Flo

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Diction and Pronunciation
  • Memorization
  • Ensemble Work

Prop Master lll - Actors are given a neutral object or prop and must give the prop meaning and value. They must also construct a Who, What and Where for the Scene Beginning, Middle and End. Ex: A towel – Who - a matador fighting a bull, a wizard performing a magic trick, a beggar uses the towel to cloak her head and beg

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Creativity
  • Personalization/ Substitution for the prop
  • Characterization
  • Playing an overall objective: to beg, to defend, to mask, to hide, to sunbathe
  • Scene Construction –Beg. Middle, End

Who – Actors are challenged to transform from one character trait to another. Ex: excited to bored, good to bad, young to old, nervous to calm etc.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Characterization
  • Creativity
  • Non-Vocal Communication
  • Observation
  • Physical Control
  • Spontaneity

Park Bench- Improvisational work on creating the Who of a Scene. Actor and Blob must determine who he or she based upon Actor A’s performance and respond accordingly.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Spontaneity
  • Characterization
  • Creativity
  • Scene Work
  • Improv

Hi- How are you – A duet scene that challenges actors to create a Who, What and Where for the scene with minimal dialogue.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Scene Construction –Beg. Middle, End
  • Verbal Work - Scene Work, Listening, Response, Verbal Exchange
  • Subtext

MARCH 2nd, 2018  -- MATH CLASS:  We had a productive math class today, with our 5th graders continuing to work on their multi-step word problems, along with exercises in converting fractions to decimals.  Our 2nd and 3rd graders are progressing nicely with their Base Ten operations and concepts, and worked on rounding to the hundreds and thousands place today. I’ve been happy to see the older students mentoring the younger ones if they get stuck, while I’m working my way around the room giving individual attention and instruction to each student.  Everyone is encouraging to each other, which is just as important as the math lesson itself! See you next Friday!

February 27th, 2018: Hip Hop Class  -- In this class, we began with a new warm-up activity in which they got the opportunity to freestyle dance and come up with their own moves. When the music starts playing, the children would listen to a song a freestyle dance then immediately freeze and hold a pose when the music stops. Warm-up activities are a great way to get the children physically and mentally prepared for our class. They also enjoyed utilizing their creativity. Then we learned the next part to our main dance routine, and spent some time reviewing our short routine. We ended with a cool-down stretch, where each kid got to pick his or her favorite flexibility stretch for everyone else to imitate. Overall, this class was different in that I gave the students more freedom to come up with their own moves and let them take turns guiding the class stretches for a couple minutes each. Next time we will strengthen our choreographies and offer the students a new dance game as a bonus if they do well at our dances.

FEBRUARY 23, 2018  -- MATH CLASS:  We had another good math class this afternoon, as our 5th graders continued their work on Base Ten Operations, and our 2nd graders worked on the ins and outs of word problems.  We introduced two-part word problems, as further progress from our work on one-part word problems last week.  There were several “light bulb moments” as our youngest students began to fully understand the concepts, which is always gratifying to see!  In addition to mastering their own advanced concepts, our 5th graders have been eager to help mentor their younger counterparts.  This creates a very positive learning environment for all! Looking forward to seeing everyone again next Friday,

February 20th -- HIP-HOP -- In this class, we worked on putting together more of their main dance routine. We clarified sections of the choreography that the students found difficult and added the next section. As our warm-up, we played a dance "name game" where the kids got to practice coming up with their own dance moves and putting them together in a sequence. They definitely enjoy creating their own dance moves, and it is a beneficial exercise in exploring their creativity. Students are doing better at remembering the moves to the routines and listening to the beat of the music.

FEBRUARY 16, 2018  -- MATH CLASS:  We had a good class today, as we continue preparing for the math portion of the California state testing. Our 2nd and 3rd grade students worked on multiplication and division concepts, as well as number sentences and word problems.  Our 5th graders had in-depth and very successful drills on all of the Base Ten concepts which will be covered in the state tests, and we also reviewed inverse operations.

FEBRUARY 14, 2018 -- HIP-HOP -- In this class, we learned the next part of our main hip-hop routine, as well as reviewed the first, shorter choreography that we learned in the first class, to prevent from forgetting. Overall, the class was more focused this time and we were able to get through more new choreography as well as clarify some previously-learned material. The did better with following the rhythm of the music, but they could still use improvement in their spacial awareness. Next class we will proceed with the new choreography.

FEBRUARY 9, 2018  -- MATH CLASS: (Substitute Teacher Bruno):  I had in classroom 3 different grades. Two 5th graders, two 2nd graders and one 3rd grader. They didn't have their next class material, so I reviewed the previous lessons with the 5th and 3rd graders, and wrote down some math problems for the 2nd graders with addition and subtraction. It all went well and the students seemed quite comfortable with the activities i proposed.

FEBRUARY 7, 2018:  HIP-HOP:  In this class, we learned the next phrase to our dance to the Bruno Mars song. We added some more intricate steps and are working toward coordinating arm and leg movements to create a more interesting choreography. The kids all managed to grasp the steps, but could perform them better if they focus more on the rhythm of the music. The class has room for improvement in the areas of dancing to the beat and executing the movements more sharply and precisely. They did well as far as remembering the steps from last time and learning the new ones. We now have two short dances, and we will add to them in the future.

 

FEBRUARY 5, 2018 - Day 3 Acting Class -

Articulator Drills – Tongue Twister Warm Ups

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Vocal Projection
  • Diction
  • Articulator Drills
  • Proper Speech

On the Spot – an improvisational exercise in creating justifications for the character

  • Concentration
  • Creativity
  • Spontaneity

Slow Motion Battle – An acting exercise in physical control with a scene objective

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Nonverbal Communication
  • Physical Control
  • Listening and Silence
  • Concentration and Focus
  • Duet Acting Scene

One Sentence at a Time Story- An ensemble exercise in storytelling

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Ensemble Acting
  • Creativity
  • Listening
  • Storytelling dynamics

Tell Me About the Time You- An exercise in beginning monologue work with a story prompt

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Plot Structure
  • Solo work for the actor
  • Believability
  • Spontaneity
  • Creativity

Shark Tank 1 – Actors create the What in the scene as inventors

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Concentration
  • Substitution – Actors ability to substitute personal conviction and endorsement
  • Plot Structure
  • Spontaneity


January 30, 2018:  HIP-HOP: This class began with us reviewing the dance we learned during the first two weeks of class. The students' objective was to memorize the steps, which they all accomplished. The older kids were quite good at following the beat of the music, and the younger ones are progressing in that skill. We then began learning the beginning of another routine. The kids have learned the beginning quite well so far, and we will add to it in the next class. One area where many of the students can improve is listening more attentively to directions and not talking while the teacher is talking or being tempted to move around the room when they are not supposed to. However, they are doing well at catching onto the dance moves and show a great deal of enthusiasm.

 

JANUARY 29, 2018  --  Acting Class

Who Started the Motion? - An ensemble exercise in physical control and working together as a company of actors

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Warm up
  • Ensemble Acting
  • Physical Control

Articulator Drill - Students engage in a series of tongue twisters

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Vocal Warm Up for the Articulators
  • Vocal dynamics
  • Diction and Enunciation

Name Game- Actors are circled up and associate names with a creative physicality

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Warm Up
  • Group Dynamics
  • Vocal Projection
  • Creativity
  • Pantomime
  • Memorization

Walking - Acting Exercise where actors are spread out across the room.  Ex: You are walking over poisonous snakes, broken glass etc. Actors learn how to use the power of their physicality and creativity to recreate given circumstances for the audience.

Emphasis and Objective

  • Believability
  • Characterization
  • Concentration
  • Nonverbal Communication
  • Physical Control
  • Spontaneity
  • Listening and Silence

Entrances and Exits- Actors are divided into groups of two or perform solo for the audience. Actors must recreate an entrance or exit based upon director’s givens. Ex: Walk on stage as if you got a bad report card and are going to show it to your parents.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Blocking
  • Characterization

Talk Show Game - Actors develop the Who in an improvisation interviewing the Experts in given careers. The Talk Show Game

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Beginning Improvisation
  • Creativity
  • Ensemble Acting
  • Concentration

 January 26, 2018  - MATH  -- Hello Math Families!  We had a good tutoring session on Friday, as we began covering the CAASPP state testing concepts for each grade level.  Each student was given worksheets specifically designed to help them master the skills needed to excel in the state test, and had one-on-one time for individualized assistance.  We will be going over the completed worksheets at our next session, so please be sure your student has their packet in their backpack each Friday.  Our class is off to a strong start as we focus on algebraic thinking and operations, the first of the state testing areas.

 January 23, 2018  - Hip-hop - In this class, we began with a dance-related "name game" to help everyone get to know each other and exercise their creativity by coming up with dance moves. Then we reviewed the choreography from last week and added some more steps. We worked on having the kids dance with more rhythmic accuracy, following the music more closely, and executing the moves with more enthusiasm and precision. The whole group made improvement in comparison from last week, and new kids caught on pretty well. Next week we will start a new dance.

January 22nd, 2018  --  Day 1 Beginning Acting Class

Group Icebreakers and Warm Up - Students were given rapid-fire questions and must stand or sit accordingly to the question. Ex: Do you have a sister? Brother? Have you ever been in a play? Attended a play? 

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Following Directions
  • Spontaneity
  • Listening
  • Concentration
  • Students and Teacher learn about the personality of the group
  • "Getting to know You" activity

Family Portraits Exercise - Students must convey to the audience a family of various groups ex: clowns, cheerleaders, wizards, ballerinas, soldiers as prompts are given.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Physicality
  • Creativity
  • Spontaneity
  • Ensemble Acting

Pantomime - Creating the Who, What and Where without dialogue- Beginning actors learn how to create a character and location in performance without the burden of dialogue. Director demonstrated first and then actors joined in.

Emphasis and Objectives

  • Beginning actors learn how to create a character and location in performance without the burden of dialogue.
  • Actors use facial expression, emotional recall, sense memory to bring a location to life on stage. Ex: The actor must recreate the beach for the stage, the heat of the sun, hot sand on their feet. We recreated a dress shop.
  • Creating a Beginning, Middle and End of a Scene
  • Ensemble Acting
  • Concentration
  • Creativity
  • Physicality

Truth or Lie - Director models this game by volunteering a story to be judged "truth or lie". Actors then volunteered to take the stage and tell us in about 1-2 minutes a story. The audience must determine if it is the truth or a lie. 

  • Believability
  • Eye contact
  • Plot Structure
  • Group Dynamics
  • Concentration

 

JANUARY 19, 2018 (MATH) -- Hello Math Families!  We had a good start to our after-school enrichment program with the CAASPP math test prep class today.  We spent time reviewing the current math concepts being covered in the classroom, as well as discussing the material we will be working on to prepare for the state testing.  Starting next week, your student will be bringing home practice worksheets to complete as part of the preparation for the state testing.  Please be sure the completed worksheets are brought back to the next class session for review and scoring, so that you can see your student's progress.  I look forward to seeing everyone next week!  Ms. Phyllis.

JANUARY 17, 2018  - Our first class went very well. The kids had a lot of energy and caught on to the dance steps quickly. We began with stretches and warm-ups to get the blood flowing, then proceeded onto our first short choreography. The students did a great job of memorizing the steps and following the best of the music.  We have some room for improvement in following the beat even more precisely and consistently, and we will work that in subsequent classes, as well as learning longer and more intricate choreographies. At the very end, our cool-down activity was a fun name game, where every kid thought of his or her own dance move to go along with their name. I will look forward to teaching these kids next week.

Please note:

We do offer private, one-on-one music lessons in the comfort of your home.  So, we suggest to continue your children’s training with one of our outstanding instructors so they don’t have a long gap between lessons, and therefore hinder their progress.

Thank you very much.

Oksana and Staff

www.oksanaschoolofmusic.com


Please watch this TED Ed video on YouTube to understand the importance of music lessons:

Original video is posted on TED Ed - Lessons Worth Sharing!