Welcome to music for the 2017-18 school year

Dear Parents,

I would like to extend a warm welcome to all of you and share some information about the music program here at TAOTS. I have already met many of your students and look forward to fostering their love of music and ensuring their musical success. I hope to meet all of you and encourage you to contact me at any point during the school year if you have any questions.

Our Kindergarten through second grade curriculum is centered on a special piano program called Music and the Brain. In addition to a traditional elementary music education that includes singing, movement, and performing on instruments, students will get class time on keyboards. Our music room has 14 keyboards. The extensive curriculum includes a repertoire of 132 songs, including examples of classical, folk, children’s music, and world music. Presented sequentially, the songs teach ear training (for rhythm and pitch), movements, analysis, geography, history, storytelling, games, singing, dancing, piano playing, improvisation and performance. Students learn pattern recognition, which helps with math skills and literacy. The Music and the Brain program stimulates kids to think, act on that thinking, and become inspired to produce their own sounds.

Our third through fifth grade curriculum is centered on the Orff method of music education. Carl Orff was a prominent German composer that developed a series of instruments with special modifications to accommodate the young student. At TAOTS, third through fifth graders will gain experience playing the recorder, xylophone, vibraphone, glockenspiel, djembe drum, conga drum, hand drums, and many other assorted percussion instruments. The approach begins with students’ innate abilities to engage in rudimentary forms of music, using basic rhythms and melodies. It builds upon these abilities to foster student self-discovery, and encourages improvisation.

Finally, all fourth and fifth graders will be allowed to sign up for the school band. Band students will miss one academic class per week for their band lesson. In addition, all experienced students (have prior experience on their instrument) will meet Wednesday, 6th period on a monthly basis. Beginning students will be expected to attend after-school beginning band which meets Wednesdays after school until 4:20pm. Instruments offered will be Flute, Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, and Snare Drum.

Sincerely,

Mr. Dubin

jdubin@taots.org