Arts Education Artist Page

Heath Eric

Heath Eric is a professional musician, entertainer, educator and artist. He is a graduate of Western Kentucky University. He has received numerous industry awards and his work has been featured in countless publications, TV and international radio.

Heath spends much of his time touring, performing and leading educational workshops. He is also President of Rumsey Records LLC, producing various musical projects, consulting and working with emerging indie artists.

Heath has been selected for artistic excellence to participate in the Performing Arts Directory, a program of the Kentucky Arts Council. Heath is also on the Kentucky Peer Advisory Network (KPAN) roster, offering professional consultancies to arts organizations and artists in Kentucky.

Potential Residency Project

Rhythm, Music, & Words
Songwriting History & Instruction
Elementary Grades 4 – 5

Project Goals and Teaching Format:
At the conclusion of the 5-day residency, students will have a solid understanding of elements of rhythm, melody and basic song structure. Students will also understand basic folk music history. Additionally, students will understand basic songwriting structure and method. Finally, students will incorporate all of this knowledge and experience, will write their own original song, and in most instances be able to record it.

We wrap up with an exciting community concert / performance at the school as a culmination of the 5-day residency. We incorporate all subject areas learned and allow the students an opportunity to perform their song for the school, parents and community.

Teaching Formats will include lecture, hands-on activities with various instruments, performance, creative brainstorming, question & answer, active listening and active participation.

Day 1: Folk Music History, History of Songwriting, Inspiration for Songs, Presentation of Folk Songs and Sing-a-longs
Day 2: Introduction to Rhythm and Rhyme; Students will get to play tambourines, shakers, hand drums, clapping; Rhyme, lessons with words and songs; Examples presented in song
Day 3: Song Structure, Verse & Chorus, Students will learn structure of song; Examples presented during lessons and related to songs we have been singing all week; Inspiration for song reinforced
Day 4: Students will write original song encompassing all areas covered
Day 5: Record song; rehearse for performance; Community/School Concert with student performance of original song

Connecting to Content: Program Curriculum meets, but not limited to, the following Kentucky Core Curriculum and National Standards:

Kentucky Standards
Elements of Music, Melody, Dynamics, Tempo and Rhythm
Primary Skills and Concepts – Music

Students will:
-begin to recognize and identify elements of music (rhythm, tempo, melody, harmony, form, timbre, dynamics) using musical terminology
-use the elements of music while performing, singing, playing instruments, moving, listening, reading music, writing music, and creating music independently and with others
-listen to and explore how changing elements results in different musical effects
-recognize, describe and compare various styles of music (spirituals, game songs, folk songs, work songs, lullabies, patriotic, bluegrass)

1.12 Students speak using appropriate forms, conventions, and styles to communicate ideas and information to different audiences for different purposes.
1.14 Students make sense of ideas and communicate ideas with music.
2.23 Students analyze their own and others' artistic products and performances using accepted standards. Culture of Music, Origins, History, Musical Styles, Differences
Primary Skills and Concepts – Music

Students will:
-begin to associate music they listen to or perform with specific cultures (Native American, Appalachian, West African)
-describe in simple terms how the music reflects the cultures; begin to associate music they listen to or perform with the Colonial American period in history
-describe in simple terms how the music reflects the Colonial American time period; begin to describe the music of specific cultures using music terminology

2.24 Students have knowledge of major works of art, music, and literature and appreciate creativity and the contributions of the arts and humanities.
2.25 In the products they make and the performances they present, students show that they understand how time, place, and society influence the arts and humanities such as languages, literature, and history.
2.26 Through the arts and humanities, students recognize that although people are different, they share some common experiences and attitudes.

National Content Standards Grade 4 – 5:
-Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music
-Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines
-Listening to, analyzing, and describing music
-Understanding music in relation to history and culture

Strategies for Community Awareness of Program:
-School newsletter
-PTA involvement
-Media alert to local media
-Promote via local radio and TV affiliates
-Coordinate with Kentucky Arts Council for promotional opportunities
-Social networking
-Posters throughout community
-Flyers sent home with all students
-Coordinate with Family Resource Center to reach community
-Coordination with faculty and staff
-Email/letter to state representatives and elected officials
-Invitation to local elected officials and leaders, inviting them to the performance, workshop, etc - make them aware of the residency.
-Include information on our website, email newsletter and other promotional formats already in place.
-Reach out to entire community for involvement in Community Concert

Encouraging Communication in and through Music:
-Encourage involvement from all students
-Q&A throughout residency in all areas covered
-Students will learn basic rhyme and melody and be encouraged to sing
-Students will learn rhythm and dynamics and be encouraged to participate with hand clapping, tambourines, hand drums, and more
-Students will be encouraged to share his/her own life experiences as inspiration for songwriting.
-Students will engage in discussion sharing favorite music, musicians, styles, etc.
-Students will sing along to well known folk songs and learn of the history behind the songs
-Students will end the week with an original song they have created and be able to share it with parents, family and friends

Creative Thinking Skill Development:
-Students will learn about basic song structure and be encouraged to write words with rhythm and rhyme.
-Students will learn aspects of nature and how it relates to well known folk songs.
-Students will learn aspects of folklore and storytelling, as told through music.
-Students will be encouraged to creatively explore topics for songwriting.
-Students will engage in brainstorming discussions related to music, songwriting, and creation of a song.
-Students will be exposed to various world cultures, origins of music, and history of song.
-Students will be able to play various percussive instruments.

Inclusion of All Children, regardless of Existing Knowledge:
-All students will be involved in discussions.
-Students will be assigned areas for participation.
-High-energy, positive reinforcement and encourage for active involvement for all.
-Every child has a voice in our residencies. Each student will have the opportunity to share, relate, engage, participate, and question.
-We maintain a safe, positive, nurturing environment for each and every child.
-There will be group rhythm cadences and group sing-alongs.
-Individual creative writing for song inspiration

Teacher Preparation for Continued Use of Knowledge:
-Encourage weekly or monthly performances of song
-Continued emphasis on creative writing and rhyme – adding verses to the song
-Relate knowledge of rhythm and rhyme to any other musical activities, lessons, performances, etc
-Encourage continued classroom discussion on musical styles, genres, artists, music, and more
-Encourage students to attend a local musical performance and report his/her experience to the class, relating to knowledge gained through residency
-Establish an open line of communication and be available to answer any questions that may arise in the future.
-Coordinate with school music program and instructors
-Encourage students to actively pursue interest in music and the arts