Arabic language and Arab cultureMusicLesson plan04Curriculum links: English, Music Global skills and outlooks: Collaborating, creative thinking, being open to new ideas Learning objectives:To find out about Arab music traditions and learn and perform a song in ArabicResources: Activity sheets, internet access
27Arabic language and Arab cultureBackground informationTraditional and classical music is an important feature of Arab culture and has been an important influence on Western music as we know it today. Musicians can be seen playing instruments in artwork from over 800 years ago and roving musicians helped spread their music to Europe. Arab musical instruments can be broadly classified into three categories: string instruments, wind instruments and percussion. Many modern western instruments have their roots in these traditional instruments. The qitara was an early version of the guitar and the Rababah, an early violin. Other popular instruments included the qanun, which resembles a table zither, and a lute, which was plucked with a vulture’s feather. Today Arab pop music is also popular among young people and with the audiences of successful television shows such as Arabs Got Talent!Ask your pupils to carry out some independent research into Arabic music and instruments and share with them one of the Arabic songs from the World Song Book in the British Council World Voice programme at -voice/world-songbook Each song has easy to follow audio files, films, a pronunciation video, music and song sheets.