Composing Activities - Rhythmic Melodies

Now that you have had some experience in composing short melodies and rhythm patterns, here you will use your rhythm patterns with your melody. Here are two examples for you to try - place the small notes on the stave using the step by step rules as before:

Example 1Rhythm Melody 1

Example 2Rhythm Melody 2

Start a new piece of music in PrintMusic with a melody instrument and 1 or 2 percussion staves. Now make up your own rhythmic melody using your own rhythm patterns and add contrasting rhythm patterns. Don't forget to add expression elements of Tempo and Dynamics. Listen carefully to your music and make changes where you think it may be improved. Play the music to your classmates and ask them to identify the elements you have included.

Bigger Steps

So far, your melodies have used the step by step rule. Now it's time to allow you to make bigger steps in your melodies. But how big is a big step? In this case, it's a step from one space to the next space or one line to the next line. This doesn't mean that you don't use the step-by-step motion any more, it means you use a mixture of small and bigger steps. Here is an example of a melody using small and bigger steps - can you tell where they occur?

Mixed Steps

Here is one for you to try in PrintMusic (place the small notes onto the stave):

Your mixed steps

You can now try to compose your own tune using a mixture of small and bigger steps and your own rhythm patterns. What note are you going to start and end on. Does it matter? Should you use different rhythm patterns for each bar (each measure of 4 beats)? What tempo and dynamic markings are you going to use? Don't forget to save your music when it is complete.