This Day in History

Friday, December 11, 2009

Name That Band Classroom Activity

With the snow beginning to fly, the complaints that the office is too cold, and the end of college semester papers due for some of us here at Teacher's Brunch HQ in frigid Auburn Hills, MI, we thought we'd offer up a fun yet slyly smart classroom activity.

The premise is simple. Your kids love music. Take advantage of that by inventing their very own musical act.

To do that, they must develop:

The band's name
The band's genre
The title of the album
Ten song titles that wouldn't bother Wal-Mart
The liner notes
The album art

On the surface, this sort of seems like a cutesy art project, but you can encourage consideration of the following:

How album art is a form of persuasion
Expectations associated with genre
Artistic freedom versus the chance for commercial success
The role of media in popular art


By way of some example, this link lists, according to the writers, the best band names out there. Some of them aren't exactly school-friendly, but you could leave them off.

One of our favorite bands around here (at least among the enlightened few) is the new musical collective Works Progress Administration.

In keeping with their name, their album art mimics WPA-era art. See for yourself:



If you run this activity, let us know how it goes.

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