Water Soundscape

For our first lesson planning assignment, we were asked to create a soundscape in response to the stimulus used in our two lesson plans. The stimulus I had chosen under the theme Water was Nya’s Long Walk by Linda Sue Parker, while also exploring the water drumming technique of the Baka people in Southeast Cameroon.

The soundscape contains the following sounds.

  • Footsteps on sugar to replicate walking on sand/dirt (environmental sounds and rhythm)
  • Clapping to replicate the clapping game (body percussion)
  • Whooshing sounds to replicate the wind (vocal sounds)
  • Twisting bottle cap open to replicate opening the cap to a jerry can (environmental sound)
  • Striking pencils across each other to replicate the sound of flies (environmental sound)
  • The sound of laughing and whooping (vocal sounds)
  • The sound of birds chirping (vocal sounds)
  • The multiple rhythms of clapping in the water to replicate the water drumming (the concept of texture)
  • The sound of the clapping speeding (the concept of tempo)
  • The sound of water draining from a sink to signal the end of the time at the water hole (environmental sound)

The piece is divided into three sections telling different elements of Nya’s story while incorporating the influence from the Baka people’s music. The first section illustrates the walk to water with the sound of the wind and footsteps and the two girls Nya and Akeer playing the clapping game. The middle section is the arrival at the water hole, flies buzzing, opening the jerry can, the sound of bees and water. The third second is the water drumming at the water hole with laughter in the background and the sound of crickets and birds, finished by the water drumming stopping and returning back home by the sound of the footsteps.

It was a really enjoyable experience creating this piece, and hopefully, it will inspire me to do the same in the classroom and explore exciting and interesting sounds.