Shiloh House - Longmont Campus
May 10, 2010 Lesson Three, Week Four
For this week we had promised the students that we would bring turntables and teach them how to scratch records. We brought DJ Pete Lott, aka DJ Hippo, with us, so that we could run two different stations: one being dedicated to learning to move the record back and forth with the hand (the action, that, for a dj, all others are predicated upon), and the other being dedicated to actually scratching the record over a beat. We introduced the turntables by way of video, a DJ Qubert production, that gave a quick overview of the mixer and the basic scratch moves. The kids were immediately enthused by both the skills demonstrated on the video and by the spectacle of the equipment that we had brought and now had set up at the front of the classroom. After the video, we held up each of the mixers and very simply demonstrated their function.
Our intention for this class was to both introduce the turntables and to have the students begin to construct the song that would, in time, turn into their final project. We gave the students instructions to pick out at a maximum five samples that they really liked and then explained that they would be working with them over the next six weeks- so it was imperative that they be discerning in the selection of these samples. We had gotten a number of requests, by the students, for a larger sample bank, which we attempted to acquire by converting our personal sample bank into files compatible for use on the student's computers. Unfortunately, when we loaded the sample bank onto the student's computers, a portion of them were distorted rendering the whole bank insufficient for the time being.
The students enjoyed the turntables and mixers and were focused on their projects. We noticed that the students were experiencing frustrations with different aspects of the program. It helped that we have had the numbers to cope with these frustrations, but it seems in order to maintain enthusiasm for the project, that we may have to address these issues in a more personalized manner, dedicating a bit more time to individualized project development. How exciting- this is the teaching part of the program!
We got a lot of questions and requests by the students to demonstrate to us what they were doing. The students helped each other and listened to each others music during their free time.
At the end off the class the students came voluntarily came to the front of the class to demonstrate what they were doing individually; all the students shared their music. Yeah!