The prototype of the active music and movement model known as Orff Schulwerk is the spontaneous play of young children in which imitation, experimentation, and personal expression occur naturally and unconsciously. In the Orff Schulwerk process, aspects of play are developed consciously to involve learners with the elements of music and movement.

These categories of activity, through the use of speech, singing, movement, body percussion, and instrumental play, include the following:

  • Preliminary Play: Guided experiences in spontaneous exploration of the materials under focus
  • Imitation: Accurate replication (echo response of a given pattern)
  • Exploration: Guided experiences in applying suggested ideas
  • Improvisation: Invention of original material

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