Recycling in music

Musical instruments made out of recycled materials and used to have fun with the voice and rhythm

    School sections
    • Primary
    • Lower secondary school
    Educational subjects
    • Instrumental practice
    • Music, Rhythm and movement
    • Aural skills (Ear training)
    • soundscapes
    • Vocalism

Recycling in music

The path was dedicated to separate waste collection with the aim to recycle and recover different materials in order to make musical instruments, as one of the most effective systems to reduce the volume of waste to be sent to the dump and help students understand how important it is to respect the environment. Moreover, the educational path also highlighted the importance of listening to the sonorous potential of the most varied materials, making distinctions, recognizing, selecting and identifying sounds and rhythms capable of raising interest, of arousing emotions, of spurring imagination, using the voice to develop musical aspects such as changes in velocity, having fun individually and in group, joining words and sounds, crescendo and diminuendo dynamics.

Work tools

The work was carried out entirely in class: the space was adjusted each time depending on the activities to be carried out. Apart from desks positioned as desired and a blackboard, the teacher used a good quality sound system, a keyboard, a personal computer, an educational percussions kit enhancing the sharing of views, tables on which to place the materials brought to class, exercise books and boards on which to record the information deemed the most important.

Educational purposes

The skills, goals and training objectives selected by the teacher for this experience are shown below.

    • Sound perception
    • Interpretation
    • Analysis
    • Comprehension
    • Execution
    • Improvisation
    • Composition
    Reading and Writing
    • Use of unconventional analogic music notation
    • Use of conventional analogic music notation
    • Learning to listen to oneself and to the others
    • Identify the constitutive elements of a simple piece of music
    • Listening, interpreting and describing pieces of music of different genres
    • Exploring, identifying and elaborating sound phenomena on the basis of quality, space and source
    • Exploring different expressive capacities of voice, musical objects and musical instruments
    • Producing timbre, melodic and rhythmic combinations applying basic schemes; executing them with the voice, the body and instruments (including IT tools).
    • Improvising freely and creatively gradually learning to master techniques and materials
    • Playing, alone or in group, simple vocal or instrumental pieces of music belonging to different genres and cultures, using also didactic instruments and self-made tools.
    Reading and Writing
    • Using analog and codified notation
    Lower secondary school
    • Actively participating in music experiences through the execution and the interpretation of vocal and instrumental music pieces belonging to different genres and cultures.
    • Capacity to conceive and create music and multimedia messages, also though improvisation or collective elaboration processes, using also IT tools, in critical confrontation with models belonging to the musical heritage
    Reading and Writing
    • Using different notation systems functional to reading, analysis and reproduction of pieces of music
    • Integrating one’s own music experience with other knowledge and practices using appropriate codes and codification systems
Educational targets

The students learned how to:
- identify the different sounds produced using different production techniques;
- indicate, in their words, several characteristics of the various sounds (bright, dark, loud, soft);
- notice that sonorous characteristics are connected to the materials of the sonorous objects;
- develop attention, concentration and interest towards the different sonorous materials;
- draw similar or comparable characteristics from different types of musical moments;
- experience recitative games and the gradual increase of the phrase;
- alternate the voice and the sonorous production with body instruments and with instruments made out of recycled materials;
- alternate solos, duos, ensembles, solos-ensembles, the crescendo of a vocal and instrumental group, the diminuendo of a vocal and instrumental group;
- memorize simple texts and their modulation;
- recognize and respect the fundamental rules of a vocal and instrumental group performance.


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