Index - MUSIC - Projects 

Projects are numbered and indexed in top section Click on the title, or scroll down to find the matching number & full text of the activity below.

Project listings are adaptable to various grade levels and can be differentiated.  Many are interdisciplinary:  be sure to look in related subject area pages (listed at left) for more ideas.

Click here for CURRICULUM STANDARDS to activities listed below.

Main Subject Area
Related Subject Areas
  Flint Hills Songs & Songwriters - LESSON  music language arts, social studies
  Beauty of Flint Hills - Analysis Song "Clean Curve of Hill Against Sky" - LESSON  music language arts, social studies
  Last Stand of the Tallgrass Prairie - Anthem to an Ecosystem - LESSON language arts, science, social studies Science, Social Studies, Language Arts
  Big Bluestem: King of the Prairie - Science-in-Song - LESSON  music science, language arts, social studies
Local musical culture and events 
music, instrumental, vocal
language arts, folklore; social studies, sociology, history
How folk music reflects the unique Flint Hills cowboy experience
music instrumental, vocal
language arts, folklore; social studies, history
Flint Hills Music & Songwriting 
music, appreciation
language arts, social studies
Local Storytelling Through Ballads - LESSON
music, vocal, instrumental
language arts, writing, literature, media; social studies, history
Plan a local music event
Music of diverse ethnic groups
music, instrumental, vocal, appreciation
language arts, speaking; social studies, sociology
Symphony in the Flint Hills
music, instrumental, appreciation
social studies; business; art; science; language arts, writing

MUSIC - Projects 


1. Local Musical Culture

Students will examine past and present local musical culture: early folk music, music in special events, community orchestras, popular local bands, dances, chorales, church music traditions, and family musical customs. Students will hypothesize how these various traditions reflect the culture, technology, economy, etc. of early periods and of today. What are some of the main musical events in the Flint Hills? (music, instrumental, vocal; language arts, folklore; social studies, sociology, history) Walnut Valley Festival  Prairie Rose Western Days   Country Stampede  Symphony in the Flint Hills

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Wildflowers in Grass

2. How Folk Music Reflects the Unique Flint Hills Cowboy Experience

Students will explore
how folk music reflects the unique Flint Hills cowboy experience. Which traditional American cowboy songs contain experiences, values, and themes that occur in the Flint Hills? Can you find any early and contemporary songs specifically on the Flint Hills cowboy? What are the origins of these folk melodies? Is it an original melody or adapted from folk tradition (possibly roots in British Isles music?) What instruments were played? Students will choose and analyze the melody and lyrics of one cowboy song. (music instrumental, vocal; language arts, folklore; social studies, history)

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3. Flint Hills Music & Songwriting

Students will identify historic and contemporary Flint Hills musicians and songwriters. (See "Music & Songwriting" section of Info Resources Art, Photography, Music & Writing) What are the special themes of their music? How do they reflect the landscape and culture? What are their musical genres? What poetic devices do they use in their song-writing (metaphor, imagery, repetition, etc.)?  What are the structures of their songs?  Where do they perform? What live music venues are available in the Flint Hills for musicians? How do they market their music? Students will write a summary profile of one Flint Hills musician.  Students can write their own song celebrating the beauty of the land and culture of the Flint Hills.  (music, appreciation; history; language arts, writing)

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4. Local Story-telling Through Ballads-LESSON - grades 7-12 


As background, students define “ballad” as a story-telling genre and review typical characteristics of ballads as well as the six stages of plot development and theme, through example of a fairy tale.  Then, students apply these concepts by analyzing up to three songs (two set in the Flint Hills and one from popular culture).  Students listen to song(s) and read lyrics, then identify ballad characteristics, interpret 6 plot stages, and state theme.  To extend learning, students can write their own ballad based on a personal experience, by adapting local folklore (legend) or true story reflecting a significant aspect of their local community’s history and culture.  Students complete Ballads Quiz as assessment reviewing terms, plot stages and ballad characteristics

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5. Plan a Local Music Event

Students will create and plan a local music event, including a marketing and promotion plan and budget, to draw visitors to their community. (music; business)

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6. Diverse Ethnic Groups

Students will explore the contributions of diverse ethnic groups on the musical culture of their communities. What ethnic groups are in your community? Investigate various aspects of their musical culture - describe their genres. What instruments do they play? How is their musical culture complex? Choose one genre of the ethnic community, choose a song within that genre, learn it vocally or instrumentally and perform it, along with a brief introduction of the song’s history and significance in that culture. (music, instrumental, vocal, appreciation; language arts, speaking; social studies, sociology)

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7. Symphony in the Flint Hills

Students will explore the musical aspects of the Symphony in the Flint Hills. What orchestra performs at this event? What instruments do they play? Is there a vocal component to the performance (narrative, musical?). What musical selections do they choose (these are found in the Symphony Journals - Schools should request copies of the annual Symphony Journals as a valuable print resource for their libraries)? How do these selections relate to the culture of the prairie? Why do you think these are chosen? What titles, themes, composers, and styles are included? How have planners evaluated the audience in choosing these selections? Students will write an essay analyzing the purpose of musical selections for the Symphony in the Flint Hills performances. (music, instrumental, appreciation; social studies; business; art; science; language arts, writing)

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