Student Assignments

Fall 2017 Listening Assignment

This assignment will fulfill the listening homework requirement listed in the Fall Challenge.

For this assignment, each student will listen to one of the videos listed at the bottom of the page. They will write a paragraph or two about the piece. Please include the title of the piece, a basic description of the piece (such as instruments used, duration of the piece, tempo, dynamics), and a sentence or two stating your thoughts and opinion of the work.

Due Date:  December 8, 2017

Many composers took their inspiration from nature.  They composed pieces about landscapes, water, the weather, and the animals.  There are a surprising number of piano pieces about birds!  For this assignment, listen to two of the following links below and answer the following questions:

  1. What was the title of the piece?
  2. How does the composer incorporate the sound of birds into his composition? (Hint: does it sound like chirps, fluttering wings, bird song, clucking?)
  3. Do you think the piece depicts the sound of birds?
  4. What is the mood of the piece? (Hint: is it sad, uplifting, humorous, energetic, playful, melancholy, mysterious?)
  5. What is your opinion of the piece?


One last note: There are other sites that offer classical music. However, in an effort to prevent having to purchase anything for this assignment, we will be using YouTube. In addition to offering endless cat videos, YouTube is a gold mine for rare recordings and emerging new artists. It also contains ads and comments sections. Please exercise caution when visiting the site. Parents of young students may wish to watch the video first.

Please choose one of the following pieces:


Liszt: St. Francis of Assisi Preaching to the Birds


Rameau: La Poule (The Hen, played on harpsichord)


Grieg:  Little Bird (from Lyric Pieces, Op. 43, No. 4)


Ravel:  Oiseaux Tristes (Sad Birds, from Miroirs)


Rameau: La Rappel de oiseaux (The Call of the Birds)


Janacek: The Barn Owl Has Not Flown Away