In 5th grade, students have the wonderful opportunity to learn an instrument of their choice as the vehicle to further their skills in music. 5th grade students will meet by general instrument groupings – woodwinds, brass – with consideration given to bassists and percussionists, as well as class size.
The “brass” class will meet M/TH and every other Wednesday. The “woodwind” class will meet T/F and every other Wednesday. Students will be assigned to a class and given their Wednesday meeting schedule in the first week of school.
Our focuses will include…
Playing an instrument with correct posture and (physical) technique.
Practicing music with accurate pitch and rhythm.
Continuing the development of a musical vocabulary – understanding both the written and symbolic language - and being able to demonstrate with accuracy.
Responding to sound/music cues made by peers in an ensemble setting as well as responding to non-verbal cues of the conductor.
Learning music that represents a variety of time periods and cultures including (but not limited to) folk music, classical, and jazz.
Listening to, discussing, and forming opinions on a variety of music including (but not limited to) folk music, classical, and jazz.
Identifying similarities between the styles and terminology of music, art, and dance.
Connecting what is learned in music to other subjects such as math, language, science, and history.
Respect for the instrument each student has chosen, for the discipline of music, and for each other as individual learning styles.
Development and demonstrating active listening, responsibility, self-discipline, and perseverance.
Students are required to practice 45 minutes per week outside of class, but to notice results quickly students should practice every day. My recommendation for the 45 minutes would be 3, 15-minute sessions. They can practice music from class (the method book) or any other music they might enjoy. Private lessons on the instrument they are learning in class with me DO count as practice time. Practice time will be recorded on a practice chart and practice charts will be turned in once every other week. Additional practice time will be extra credit. Practice charts and the collection schedule will be started after students get settled into the year.
Students will also have in-class performance tests, but they will have several opportunities to practice in class and to play the tested exercise. These opportunities are great for building self-esteem and peer support!
*Regarding practice: try to remember, that it may not sound like “music” at first. It may be frustrating at first, it is with hard work, self-discipline, and time that YOU WILL IMPROVE; and when you do improve, practice will be more fun!
Students who are borrowing an instrument from the school must fill out and return a signed “instrument use contract”. Students are responsible for general care and repair of the instrument. Instruments must be returned in their original conditions. If there is a shortage of some instruments, I will talk to the students and parents involved to come up with a solution.
Please see the supply list to be sure students have what they need based on the instrument they have been assigned. Students will need to purchase their own method book. These books do not necessarily need to come to school with them, as I have a class set of books. However, students who like to write in their books will only be able to do so in personally owned books. Otherwise, the purchased book can stay at home for home practice sessions.
Materials for class
Students must come prepared to class with their instrument and supplies (reeds, valve oil, etc), music/method book, and a pencil! Having required materials, along with bringing a positive attitude and 100% effort, are the 2 components of class participation.
Early musical training helps develop brain areas involved in language and reasoning and is also linked with the development of spatial intelligence.
Students in the arts learn to think creatively and to solve problems by imagining various, out of the box solutions.
Recent studies show that students who study the arts are more successful on standardized tests such as the SAT. They also achieve higher grades in high school.
A study of the arts provides children with a glimpse of other cultures and teaches them to be empathetic towards the people of these cultures.
Through music study, students learn the value of sustained effort to achieve excellence and the concrete rewards of hard work.
Music study enhances teamwork skills and discipline. Students must commit to learning music, attending rehearsals, and practicing.
Music provides children with a means of self-expression.
Music performance teaches young people to conquer fear and to take risks. Risk-taking is essential if a child is to fully develop his or her potential.