ODA Students Learn to Make Waves

Upper School musicians give STEM students a unique, live science lesson that provided a visual representation of various sounds.
Upper School orchestra and band members accompanied Ms. Caitlyn Dixon and Mr. Pat Miller on a visit to the Siesta Key Campus to give Mr. Greg Sheridan's students a “Physics of Sound” demonstration in the Dart STEM Lab. The fourth graders, who have been learning about the properties of waves, were excited to share what they knew and collaborate with the older students.

Natalie Carrión ’23 facilitated a lively, interactive discussion on how the music we hear— whether it is soft or loud, high pitched or low pitched, is determined by sound waves traveling through the air. Natalie and her fellow musicians accompanied the discussion by demonstrating the variations of waves by playing their instruments–viola, violin, cello, and bass–which were recorded live by Ms. Dixon with an application that translated the music into a visual representation of the sound waves. The fourth graders enjoyed watching the sound waves projected onto the screen, hypothesizing how different notes and manners of playing would affect them. 

“The opportunity for our Upper School students to apply complex physics principles from their advanced classes to the properties of the sound waves and vibrations from their stringed instruments was as much a learning experience for them as it was for Mr. Sheridan's 4th graders,” said Ms. Dixon. “This cross curricular and multi-grade collaboration demonstrated the intersection of music and science and provided a wonderful opportunity for all of our students to make meaningful connections between the content from their classrooms and the world they observe around them.” 

The Out-of-Door Academy

LOWER SCHOOL |  Historic Siesta Key Campus  |  Pre-K – Grade 5
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  |  Uihlein Campus in Lakewood Ranch  |  Grades 6 – 8 |  Grades 9 – 12
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