For example, show a picture of the string family and explain that it is the
string family because it has strings. Show pictures of each individual
instrument using the site below. Pictures should include violin, viola, cello,
double bass and harp. Explain that the smaller the instrument the higher the
pitches it plays and the bigger the instrument the lower the pitches it plays.
In the string family the highest pitch instrument is the violin and the lowest
pitch instrument is the double bass. The harp has both short and long
strings so it can play relatively high and low.
Show students a picture of the brass family and tell them, "This is the brass
family." Explain that you have to blow air into the mouthpiece (point to one)
to make the instrument sound. Show pictures of each individual instrument
and have students repeat the name with you. Pictures should include
trumpet, French horn, trombone and tuba. Tell students that since trumpets
are the smallest they play the highest pitches. Let students guess which
instrument will play the lowest pitches in the brass family (tuba).
Show students a picture of the woodwind family using both single reed and
double reed instruments. Explain that the sounds are made by using your
breath to vibrate a wooden reed, except for the flute which uses breath
blown across the hole in the mouthpiece. Show pictures of each individual
instrument and have students repeat the name with you. Pictures should
include flute, clarinet, oboe and bassoon which are used in "Peter and the
Wolf". (You may also want to show them the saxophone picture which would
not be a part of the symphony but one they will probably recognize.) Let
students guess which instrument will play the highest pitches (flute) and
which instrument will play the lowest pitches (bassoon).
Show students a picture of the percussion family. Explain that an instrument
you strike or hit with your hand or an object (like a mallet) is a percussion
instrument. Show pictures of each individual instrument. Pictures should
include tympani, bass drum, snare drum, and cymbals. Let students guess
what other instruments might fit into the percussion family (triangle, gong,