Lesson 3

Sounds Like Fun: Seeing Animal Sounds

Seeing Sounds / Grade 4 / Brockton, MA

The EIE Curriculum

EiE- Sounds Like Fun: Seeing Animal Sounds Lesson 3

Students analyze some properties of sounds, including pitch, volume, and duration, and begin exploring ways to represent simple sounds.

Reflection Questions

How does Diane encourage students’ imagination as they come up with ideas about how to represent sound?

Diane takes every opportunity to support the idea that engineering problems have multiple solutions.

  • Diane reminds her students that in the story, Kwame used yams and plantains to represent sound. (4:00)
  • Diane uses the chart paper to records the various ideas that students have for showing pitch changes (straight lines, arrows). (4:39)
  • Kids make lots of different graphics. (6:20, 6:25, 8:39)
  • Diane calls attention to the representation of a student who had a particularly unique way of showing pitch change. (6:35)
  • Diane acknowledges Davian’s comment that “you could use almost anything” to represent sound and points out that it is the choice of the acoustical engineer. (6:53)

What do you notice about the development of the students’ distinction between pitch and volume?

Because students’ understanding of pitch and volume is developing, but not fully formed, Diane is taking steps to help students build their understanding.

  • When first asked, students describe the flight call only in terms of changes in pitch. (1:52)
  • After Diane prompts them, one student seems to conflate pitch and volume, using terms like higher and louder to describe the sounds in the flight call. (2:25)
  • Diane focuses the students’ attention specifically on pitch by having them use hand gestures to show the pitch changes. (3:03)
  • Before playing the second call, Diane states that the only property that changed in the first call was the pitch. (6:38)