Quaverizing Your Classroom: Part Two

by Abby @ Quaver on January 19, 2017

in At Quaver HQ

Charles Black is back for part two of his “Quaverizing Your Classroom” series! In part one, Charles showed us how to bring Quaver’s Marvelous World of Music to life by creating your own Bigfoot, Timeline Train, and Beat Jar. See how you can continue turning your classroom into Quaver’s Music shop!

Take it away, Charles!

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Today, we will cover how to incorporate replicas of three more very visible elements of Quaver’s Music Shop that can easily become part of your own music world. I can promise that your students will be quite excited as they enter your room by walking on the Keyboard Pathway, and will probably be ecstatic when they realize you now have your own Red Telephone Box, and even a Keyboard Awning Curtain!

How to Bring Quaver’s World to Life:

Red Telephone Box

The Red Telephone Box is likely the most well-known set piece of every Quaver episode. I have wanted a real Telephone Box in my classroom ever since I saw the first episode!

What you need:

  • 3 pre-cut interior doors (24″ wide and 80″ tall)
  • 3/4″ plywood
  • Red paint

1) Create the Sides and Door

I used three pre-cut interior doors, which are 24″ wide, and 80″ tall, which can be purchased at any of the large home improvement stores.

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Two of the doors will become the sides of the phone box, and one will be the door. The back will be made from 3/4″ plywood, and will be placed against the wall.

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2) Paint the Phone Box Red

Of course, you must paint it bright red!

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3) Put a Computer and Phone Inside (Optional)

My phone box sits next to my SmartBoard screen. So inside the phone box, I added a shelf to hold the media computer and even an antique pay phone!

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Keyboard Pathway

When we see visitors enter Quaver’s Music shop, they follow a keyboard pathway that is actually painted on the floor.  I didn’t think our school administrators would be very pleased if I started painting on the floor, so I had to figure out a way to accomplish the pathway in a less permanent fashion.

What you need:

  • Pre-printed keyboard cloth
  • 2 4′ x 8′ sheet of white masonite
  • Spray adhesive
  • Thick clear vinyl
  • Carpet knife/metal straight-edge
  • Plastic edge molding
  • Two-sided carpet tape

1) Purchase Pre-Printed Keyboard Cloth

First, I located a pre-printed keyboard cloth that is two feet wide, and comes in ten-foot rolls. I purchased mine from an online music supply company. I ended up getting three sections, so my pathway is a full thirty feet long. You may not need as much as I do, so decide the length that works best for your classroom.

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2) Attach the Keyboard Fabric to White Masonite

I then obtained two 4′ x 8′ sheets of white masonite, which can be purchased inexpensively at a large home improvement stores – they will even cut it for free. I had them cut the masonite half (the long way), so then I had four pieces each 2′ x 8′. I used spray adhesive (be sure to open the windows) to attach the keyboard fabric to the white masonite. If you don’t use something white as the backing, it will bleed through the fabric keyboard.

3) Cover with Clear Vinyl

I covered the whole thing with thick clear vinyl, which can be purchased by the yard at fabric or craft stores. I used a carpet knife/metal straight-edge to split the 48″ width vinyl down the middle to give me five yards.

4) Secure the Vinyl

I found some plastic edge molding to use on the sides to hold the vinyl in place, and secured the masonite to the floor with two-sided carpet tape. You can use a simple sponge mop to clean the finished keyboard when it gets dirty.

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Not only do the students walk on the pathway when entering the room, but it is also a great way to have them line up at the end of class. When I am doing a lesson on understanding the pattern on the keyboard, there is nothing better than a “room-size” visual aid!


Keyboard Awning Curtain

A very simple, but eye-catching project, is to make your own version of the infamous keyboard awning curtain that we see on the homepage of the Quaver website.

What you need:

  • Keyboard fabric
  • Iron (optional)
  • Iron-on seam tape (optional)

1) Obtain Keyboard Fabric

We had a fairly difficult time locating keyboard fabric that would work, but just before giving up on that project altogether, we found our answer while attending the Texas Music Educators Conference.  One of the large online music specialty vendors had keyboard beach towels for sale! We bought enough towels to meet our window measurements, but you may have better luck finding keyboard fabric than I did.

2) Connect the Pieces (Optional)

If you’re like me and had to use little pieces of fabric to make one long one, then I recommend ironing the pieces using iron-on steam tape.

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The keyboard curtains are the perfect complement to the keyboard pathway, and contribute a lot to the musical atmosphere of the room.

 

Talk to you next time when I’ll show you how to create the Giant Harmonica, Instrument Display, Composer Busts, and several other surprises I think you will enjoy.  I hope these ideas get you in the creative spirit this holiday season!  Happy Quaverizing!

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Has anyone built their own Bigfoot, Timeline Train, or Beat Jar? Stay tuned for Part 3 of Charles Black’s Quaverizing Your Classroom series!

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