Creating an 8-measure, G Major Pentatonic Melody

Creating an 8-measure, G Major pentatonic melody

Deirdre Roberts
[email protected]
International School of Phnom Penh

TI:ME Technology Areas Addressed:

Electronic Musical Instruments


Middle School


General Music


lab equipped with electronic keyboards, midi(s), computers with Sibelius 3.1


40 Minutes

Prior Knowledge and Skills:

familiarity with piano keyboard, ability to lacate and play G major pentatonic scale, familiarity with some Sibelius functions, including step time entry method. Familiar with rhythms and placement of particular numbers of beats inside measures in a piece.

MENC Standards Addressed:

MENC 4: Composing and Arranging Music within specified guidelines.
MENC 5: Reading and notating music.




Students will demonstrate prowess with step time entry in Sibelius 3.1. They will be able to troubleshoot simple problems that arise. They will be able to compose an eight measure melody with the prescribed pitch set. Using rhythms familiar to them they must enter the appropriate number of beats per measure (Sibelius helps with this because it complains if they try to enter too many).


Students will play through the prescribed set of pitches (G,A,B,D,E–beginning with the middle C octave and also using the next octave up). They may spend some time “noodling” among these notes, finding combinations that please them.

Next, they will open Sibelius. They will open a new file, open a piano score in 4/4 with no metronome marking. They will title their pieces and write their names in the composer space(s). They must enter the melody in the treble clef by the step time entry method with an electronic keyboard. Work needs to be saved in their student files.


Next class: Students will play back songs; peers will help in determining if criterion were met.

Follow Up:

Students could lengthen the melodies themselves. They could create harmony parts for their melodies. They could learn more functions within the Sibelius software for entering dynamic markings or articulations.

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