Lesson Notes By Weeks and Term - Primary 5


WEEK 3&4





Behavioral objectives

At the end of this lesson, pupils should be able to:

1. explain the term ‘Tonic sofa’;

2. write values of sol-fa names;

3. set words to sulfas notation;

4. clap rhythm of the phrase set to music;

5. play the notes on an instrument.

INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS: A chart showing all the musical notes

Reference Materials

Lagos state scheme of work,

Online information

Relevant materials

Pupils textbook

Behavioral Objectives: pupils are familiar with the topic in their previous classes.




The tonic sol-fa notation

Music notation is a system of signs used to represent music sounds. There is staff notation and sol-fa notation. Staff notation has seven notes. They are often written on the staff. On the other hand, a sol-fa notation is a system in which the notes of the music scale are represented by seven short words, namely do, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti, do. It uses a system of musical notation known as modulator. The modulator deals with the rising and falling of sound. In tonic sol-fa notation, every music tone or note is given a name according to its relationship with other tones in the key. The usual staff notation is replaced with tonic sol-fa. It has the abbreviations d, r, m, f, s, l, t, d. See the diagram

on page 47 for their descriptions in music. The tonic sol-fa method makes use of a system of time-names to aid in the study of time in music. The pulse is the unit of measurement, and a tone one pulse long is named TAA, for example: d :d d :d. When a tone continues through more than one pulse, it is indicated by a dash, and the time-name is obtained by dropping the consonant, for example: d :d |d : |d :- | : TAA TAA TAA - AA | TAA - AA - AA - AA

A pulse is divided into halves (half-pulse) -,,,-, , tones are named TAATAI, and is indicated in the notation by a dot in the middle.

A tone continued into the first half of the next pulse, a paulse-and-a-half tone is named and indicated thus:

FIG. 1

Values of tonic sol-fa

The values of tonic sol-fa notation are always represented by dots. The number of dots placed before the sol-fa notation determines the duration or the length of the sound. Sol-fa does not generally indicate time signatures, and does not differentiate between the different beat values of 2/2, 2/4 and 2/8. They are all written in the same way. A bar line (|) precedes the first beat of the bar, and a colon precedes beat two.

A note longer than one beat is indicated by a dash (–). A full stop precedes the half beat, and a comma precedes a quarter beat. An inverted comma (‘ ‘) precedes a triplet division. Rests are simply rhythm marks without sol-fa names.

The following are examples of the values in tonic sol-fa notation: d. This represents half beat. d: This represents one beat. d:-: This represents two beats. d:-:-: This represents three beats. d:-:-:-: This represents four beats.


Setting words to sol-fa notation

Setting words to sol-fa notation means writing a poem or lyric and writing solfa notation to represent them. It is important to understand the way words are set to sol-fa notation in your study of music. Study the steps below. Your teacher would guide you.

Step 1

The poem should be written out like this:



Righteousness exalts a nation.

Sin is a reproach to a people.

Lord, give us righteousness.

Step 2

The poem should be set to syllables:

O – Righteousness!

O – Righteousness!

Righteousness exalts a nation. Sin is a reproach to a peo-ple. Lord, give us right-eo

FIG. 2

Step 3

The rhythm should be written out:

d - : d: d: / d : - : - : - : /

d - : d: d: / d : - : - : - : // (etc.)

Step 4

The tune should be set into tonic sol-fa: d - : / : s : / d: - : - : - :

O : right-eous-ness! (etc.) r : - d : t : / d : - : - : - //

O right-eous-ness!

Clapping to the rhythm of the phrase (group of notes) set to music

Music reading requires constant practice for one to achieve fluency; and music reading involves clapping or tapping to the rhythmic movement of the music. This helps to bring out the sentences and phrases in the music. As you gain experience, you are expected to be able to have knowledge of common rhythmic phrases, i.e. a group of music notes, which can be instantly recognized. This is the ability to respond to common phrases and idioms in any spoken language. Your music teacher will guide you through standard music repertoire, with technical exercises. This is in addition to rhythm-only drills, which will help you to greatly improve your adding abilities and sense of timing and it will also add variety to your music practice.

The following extract from Alan Cunningham’s song may be used in the training.

Gone were but the winter cold,

And gone were but the snow, I could sleep in the wild woods Where primroses blow.

When writing a rhythm, you are first expected to read the verse carefully. You should think about what the words mean; and then read it aloud to find which the strong (stressed) syllables are and which the weak are.

The first two lines in the verse above, for example, have alternate syllables stressed. You can mark them with accent signs, like this:

Góne were bút the winter cóld,

And góne were bút the snów,

If you say it aloud, you can hear that it almost automatically produces a duple-time rhythm, e.g. 2/4. Now you can set each syllable to a crotchet, and put each stressed crotchet in a strong position by making it as the first beat of a bar.

FIG. 3

If you look at the third line, you will find that it is not so easy. However, by stressing alternate syllables like the first two lines on the fourth line, you

would have to stress the last syllable of ‘primroses’ as follows: Where primroses blow

But that does not sound right, because ‘primroses’ has a stress on the first syllable only.

If you read the words aloud, you can hear that the stress should be like this:

I could sleep on the wild woods

Where primroses blow

However, you can see that these stresses are not as regular as the first two lines, but you can keep the stressed syllables on the strong beats by using a combination of longer and shorter notes like this:

 FIG. 4


1. explain the term ‘Tonic sofa’;

2. write values of sol-fa names;

3. set words to sulfas notation;

4. clap rhythm of the phrase set to music; 5 play the notes on an instrument.

WRAP-UP (CONCLUSION): Teacher goes over the topic once again for better understanding.



Fill in the gaps with the correct answers from the options provided below.

1. Music notation is used to represent _________________. a) music jamz b) music hiphop c) music sounds

2. The staff notation has _________________ lines. a) five b) six c) seven

3. The modulator deals with the _________________ and _________________ of sound.

a) sloping, jumping b) rising, slanting c) rising, falling

4. The values of tonic sol-fa notation are represented by _________________. a) comma b) question marks c) dots

5. Setting words to solfa-notation means _________________ a poem or lyrics. a) copying b) jolting c) writing

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