Wednesday, January 20, 2010

iPods for Hebrew

Our grade six class participates in a Shabbaton every year. The entire grade six class spends Shabbat at the school, and the Judaic teachers plan a different theme each year for the grade. This year the theme is Music for the Soul. The teachers asked me if they could use the iPods to record the students' singing various songs to celebrate Shabbat. This is the students' own description of their Shabbaton:

Dear Students and Staff,
On behalf of the Grade Six class of Shabbaton 2010, we would like to present a Siddur and accompanying C.D. to everyone who enjoys Shabbat music from their souls. In this Siddur, there are prayers and the translations to the prayers. We wrote stories that connect to the themes of the prayers. Included are: Shabbat quotes and art work. We decided to create this Siddur and C.D because we think that the new and jazzy tunes will enhance your Kabbalat Shabbat.
We are excited to share this new music with you. We feel more connected to Hashem because we are singing prayers with joy and intention (כוונה). We hope that this new music to traditional prayers will get passed down from generation to generation.

The grade six teachers and I used the iPod to record the students singing, when we realized that the sound quality was much better than recording directly to a computer. After recording, I used Audacity to create single tracks of each of the songs on the Mac. The CD has been burned and will be burned for each student, as well as the teachers in the elementary school.

This is the best part of acquiring new hardware; finding a new use for a teacher who has a need for the technology. The iPod made the recording easy and portable and the sound quality was excellent. I would like to ask other members of this blog if they have suggestions regarding posting the songs somewhere on the web.


rachel said...

does your school have a website? maybe you coudl post them there...

Rabbi Daniel Rosenberg said...

We use a school intranet for posting materials - which is nice if we want to keep the material private.
You may also be able to create a youtube profile and upload the music files to that profile, and instead of having to burn a CD for each student, students can download directly to their own home computers or MP3 players (if they have them) and reduce the complication of burning CDs for everyone if at least some can do on their own.

Judy Doctoroff said...

The grade six teachers decided that they really wanted each child to get a CD. The kids created their own covers and we purchased a CD stomper to affix the labels. They actually look really great! But I do wonder if the CDs will actually be used by the students. The teachers in our school will also be receiving one for their classrooms and hopefully they will use them.
However, I'm going to look into the idea of a youtube submission as well.
Thanks for the suggestions!

Leehe Matalon said...

What a great idea! I would love to see an example. Please let us know where you end up posting it!