MUSIC DEPARTMENTGeneral Music Grade 6:
Sixth grade General Music is a half-year exploratory class in which students can gain a greater understanding of music theory. The class is designed for the beginner, but can be challenging enough for the more advanced student. Topics include: note reading, time signatures, rhythmic patterns, key signatures, and the musical symbol system. The course concludes with a final composition project, which is a creative culmination of all concepts learned throughout the course. The class requires each student to have a portfolio, ruled notebook, manuscript notebook and pencils. These items will be stored in the classroom and used again in both seventh and eighth grade General Music.General Music Grade 7:
Seventh grade General Music is a half-year course which builds on the basic elements taught in sixth grade but is taught through the biographies of Beethoven and other European composers of the Classical and Romantic Eras. European history becomes an interdisciplinary component associated with the music of that time period. Students are assigned to write an essay about Beethoven in the first person. In the writing component, we implement the same procedures and process used by the English Language Arts Department. The class concludes with students composing variations on Beethoven’s “Ode To Joy” theme, incorporating concepts taught in the previous year. The students will use the same portfolios and notebooks from the past year. Please note that grade 6 General Music is not a prerequisite for this class.General Music Grade 8:
Eighth grade General Music is a half-year course encompassing all ideas and concepts taught in the sixth and seventh grades. Listening skills are the major component in this class. Students are asked to identify: rhythmic patterns, melodic patterns, and the sounds of specific instruments and instrument families. Students must create a group Critical Listening Map based on compositions by American composers. American history becomes an interdisciplinary component. Individual composer essays are required from each student. These essays will be written in the format taught by the English Language Arts Department. Please note that grade 7 General Music is not a prerequisite for this class.
Performing Music Program Grades 6-8:
Students have the opportunity to participate in the district's performing music program as a member of the Band, Orchestra or Chorus. Each grade level has its own performing ensemble. Students are encouraged to participate in more than one organization (i.e: band/chorus or orchestra/chorus). A lunch-time chorus labrehearsal is scheduled for dually enrolled performing music students on each grade level. Performing music programs are sequential and require successful completion of the previous year’s course or the recommendation of the music teacher and permissionof the District Director of Music.
Select Choir, Jazz Ensemble and Chamber Orchestra are select ensembles available by audition for students who wish to devote the extra time and effort required for membership. In addition, the music department produces a Musical each year. Students in all grades are invited to audition.