Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Make A Joyful Noise

This year the theme of the Lower School is ‘Make A Joyful Noise’. Before taking a deep dive into the science of sound, Sky Class is exploring the abundance and variety of sounds in the world. Students learned about the scientific method by asking what different environments might sound like, hypothesizing and then gathering data in their sound journals. We began by cataloguing the sounds present within and around our Sky Class Community. Roughly half of the students documented the sounds present inside our classroom and half documented the sounds outside our classroom. To no one’s surprise we heard laughter, children playing with balls, trees rustling and pencils scribbling.

The New York Times then gave us an opportunity to travel the world to explore the sounds present in different environments. So far Sky Class has taken ‘field trips’ to Hawai’i and Madagascar. We travelled to Hawai’i, which is a chain of volcanic islands, to listen to the sound of an active volcanic eruption. The class predicted that they would hear lots of explosions, banging and other loud noises. Students were shocked that the sound resembled breaking glass. Although many people may remember the volcanic eruptions in Hawai’i earlier this year, most people don’t know that the Kilauea volcano on the Big Island has been continuously erupting since 1983 and the volcano is the world’s longest continuously erupting volcano. 

Before our trip to Madagascar we learned about lemurs. The indri lemur is the largest lemur and we listened to their mating calls. Indri lemurs mate for life and their mating songs change over time to become more harmonized. The longer the couple has been mating, the more in sync their songs are. 

If you’d like to take a sound journey with your child please explore the New York Times Voyages: Sounds from Around the World.