Item No: 21242


by Jennifer Ristvedt-Hille and illustrations by Steffi Andrat Faria

In The Joe Family from Grand Staff and the Common Sidewalk, Grandpa Joe introduces you to his funny family of music notes and invites you to walk and talk like them in a way that you are sure to remember. Walking and talking like the Joe Family may help you learn to read and play whole, half, quarter, eighth, triplet, and sixteenth notes. The text, while relatively simple, will help you understand the complex world of reading, understanding, and using music notation.

The Joe Family from Grand Staff and the Common Sidewalk is a great resource for music and general education teachers, homeschool families, and anyone who wishes to understand music notation or explore music theory in a new way. The Joe Family began with a simple kindergarten music lesson about comparing my adult shoe size and a child’s shoe size to the amount of sound a quarter and two eighth notes make. It has grown into comparing how a family of music notes walk and talk on a measure of the common sidewalk in their fictional town called Grand Staff. Implemented primarily in K-5 music classrooms, the story has developed and been performed for kindergarten to 80-year-old public and private instruction music students off and on for over 25 years.

Come along with Grandpa Joe, the whole note, as he introduces you to his funny family of music notes. Walk, talk, read, write, and build beats composing rhythmic patterns while you have fun learning to read music notes!

Flipbook comes with an interactive version with rich media that can be accessed via the web on any device. It also comes with a PDF version of the flipbook that can be read offline.


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From the author:

Western Music notation is a new language for students. Those black symbols on a white background often make no sense to our students, and they quickly give up. As a novice music teacher, I recognized that this problem needed a solution. I became curious and attempted to solve it. In my search for an answer, I remembered that in one of my Master level courses, Storytelling Across the Curriculum, I discovered how the power of a well-told story can teach a valuable lesson. Researching the value and relevance of story in learning led me to organizational psychologist Peg Neuhauser who found that “learning which stems from a well-told story is remembered more accurately, and for far longer, than learning derived from facts and figures.”

Similarly, psychologist Jerome Bruner’s research suggests that facts are 20 times more likely to be remembered if they’re part of a story. Because The Joe Family from Grand Staff and the Common Sidewalk weaves together story and fact in a fun and memorable way it’s like a double punch when it comes to the ability to read, remember, understand, create, perform, and respond to music. It pulls the reader into a land where the fine arts meet logic and creates cohesion between two worlds that are often separated in current pedagogical thought.

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