A web site, supported by San Francisco Symphony, to provide an introduction to music for children and their families. The Homepage toolbar contains the usual informative site link in addition to an interactive Radio which links users to a variety of music clips appropriate for young listeners. Each clip also contains an annotated description of the musical selection. The Navigation Bar contains provides links to the Instruments of the Orchestra, Music Lab (which contains music content modules), and What's Up at the Symphony(which contains a listing of upcoming SFS events). Overall the Homepage contains tools that provide a positive incentive for users to explore the world of music.
To provide an introduction to music and the symphony in particular for children and their families
Target Student Population:
Children and their families; high school and college students.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Flash and html; audio player and speakers
Type of Material:
HTML with Flash. Highly interactive web-based tools that provide a rich experience for young and old alike. The music clips are appropriate for the target audience and the audio is of superior quality.
Introduction to the materials of music and the creative process employed by musicians and composers. The site is also a very positive platform to build young audiences for symphonic music.
Evaluation and Observation
Colorful highly interactive web-based tools that are very inviting for the target audience. Rich in music content. Superior listening guides and music clips.
Major focus is instrumental music; perhaps some examples of choral music would provide an additional listening and learning option.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Very positive and useful educational site for introduction to music. The various tools motivate users to explore the world of music and encourage even more study of and appreciation for symphonic music and music making. . The Music Lab is an excellent tool that lets students play and learn with musical concepts.
Some of the secondary woodwind instruments (Instruments of the Orchestra tool)did not provide a link to a music clip.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The Homepage is relatively clean and provides just enough information to perk interest to explore the site in-depth. The site has a good balance of visual and written symbols that allow users with limited or developing language skills to benefit from the many rich resources available on the site. Overall navigation appears to be seamless and offers users a rich variety of options to explore in the learning about music and the symphony orchestra.
Other Issues and Comments:
One very positive outcome of this site is it not only provides a content-rich experience in music, but also encourages and allows the user to then make informed choices about music and music performance. Ultimately it is laying the foundation for a more informed and sophisticated future audience.