I love "The Planets" by Gustav Holst! I have studied little bits of it with my kids in the past, but this year I decided to really expand on some ideas and create a unit that has lasted about 8 classes. Manitoban students study the solar system in grade 6 Science, so the cross-curricular connections have been great for students to get engaged!
Here is what we did!
I introduced our unit by putting together a Smartnotebook file that included:
Brainstorm what we know about planets already.
Discover/discuss how Planets are named after Roman gods.
How all of this relates to music. Touch each planet to find out!
Discuss what we hear in the Mars and Venus movements (instruments, phrasing, mood, etc.).
Click HERE for the FREE Smartboard file! I promised that I've shared it this time!
Next the students did a Gustav Holst Webhunt! I had a list of questions for them to answer. Students used the internet to find their answers.
I took all of their answers to create a Holst autobiography. Click HERE for the video. Students studied from the video to prepare for a short quiz about Holst.
Stay tuned for Part 2 and 3 of The Planets unit!