Guided Compositions

Guided Composition

Julie Perrotte
[email protected]
Kerr Elementary School

TI:ME Technology Areas Addressed:



Elementary/ Grade 4/ General Music


Portable i-book lab
Finale Notepad


40 Minutes

Prior Knowledge and Skills:

Students know the lines and spaces on the staff.
Students know how to use the i-book (power, mouse, starting applications, computer shut down, etc.). The students have also had some exploratory time in Finale Notepad.

NAfME standard of 1994 Addressed:

NAfME standard of 1994: Composing and Arranging Music within specified guidelines.
NAfME standard of 1994: Reading and notating music.

NAfME 2014: Creating 

NAfME standard of 1994: Listening to, analyzing and describing music.
NAfME standard of 1994: Evaluating music and music performances.

NAfME 2014: Responding 


Laptops with finale notepad installed.


The students will be able to compose a 4 measure piece using pitches B, A, G, C’, and D’ and rhythms du, du-de, du-ta-de-ta, and rest.

The student will be able to enter his or her composition using the “point and click method ” in Finale Notepad.


1. Distribute laptops to students. (5 min)

2. Turn on laptops, and launch Finale Notepad. (5 min)

3. Guide the students through the document wizard, and the set-up of the document. (5min)

4. Teacher will play a rhythm pattern on a pair of claves.
students will decode the rhythm as a group. This will be the rhythm of measure 1. (repeat for all measures and write each pattern on the board). (5 min)

5. Students may choose between the pitches B, A, G, C’, and D’ with the given rhythms. Remind the students that they have to be able to play the piece, so don’t split a du-ta-de-ta up on different pitches etc. ( 2 min)

6. Give students the rest of the class to create his/ her composition. Help as needed.

7. At the end of class, save, print, and have some students playback his/her piece to the entire class.


Successful completion of composition. Does it follow the given guidelines?

Follow Up:

Mini recital of recorder pieces.

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