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Antonio Vivaldi

To encourage children to recognize the value of having a positive attitude.

by Margaret Liversidge

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)

Aims

To encourage children to recognize the value of having a positive attitude.

Preparation and materials

  • A board or card showing the words 'Antonio Vivaldi 1678-1741'.
  • Flip-chart or OHT and pen.
  • If possible, some seasonal pictures, i.e. spring, summer, autumn, winter.
  • 'Spring' from Vivaldi's The Four Seasons as listening music at the beginning and end of the assembly.

Assembly

  1. Comment on the different expressions on the children's faces as they are sitting listening to you speak at the beginning of the assembly. Ask for a volunteer to come out and draw on the flip-chart a face with a positive expression. During and after the drawing, ask the children to interpret how a person is feeling when they are wearing a positive expression. Repeat the exercise, but this time with the emphasis on a negative expression/feelings.
  2. Explain that we can be influenced by the positive or negative attitude of other people/children and that it is a good thing in life to learn to develop a positive attitude in as many situations as possible, for our own benefit but also for that of others.

  3. Refer to the composer Antonio Vivaldi's name. Explain how he was strongly influenced in life by noticing the natural world around him.

    If he had been an artist he might have painted beautiful pictures.
    If he had been a poet he might have written descriptive poems.
    But since he was a musician, he wrote beautiful music, which painted descriptive pictures through the very clever use of sounds.

  4. Vivaldi was always looking for ways of creating new musical sounds. In his compositions he experimented with the sounds using many different instruments and voices. Ask the children to listen carefully for the way Vivaldi has used instruments to recreate bird sounds in 'Spring', the listening music for this assembly/week.

  5. Vivaldi's music is always energetic, full of life and never old-fashioned. Explain that, for these reasons, some adults are able to recognize Vivaldi's music when they hear it played. A bright and cheerful day could be referred to as a 'Vivaldi Day'. At this point (or earlier) look together at the seasonal pictures you may have and relate them to Vivaldi's musical interpretation of nature. Comment on how noticing and appreciating the world around can cheer us up and help us change our attitude.

  6. 'A cheerful heart is good medicine' (Proverbs 17.22). Ask the children to think about this saying. What do they think it means?

Time for reflection

Ask the children to consider their attitude today. Could they aim to show a positive face to the world, even if they are feeling negative? Encourage them to realize that being positive affects both themselves and others.

If the sun is shining, thank God for a 'Vivaldi Day'!

Lord of all cheerfulness,
please help us to have a positive attitude
towards our work,
our teachers and helpers,
our play and our friends today.
Amen.

Song/music

'God of the morning' (Come and Praise 2, 105)
'All things bright and beautiful' (Come and Praise, 3)

Publication date: April 2002   (Vol.4 No.4)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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