Montague Charter Academy Performing Arts Program
Vision for the 2017-2018 School Year
The TK-5 music curriculum is designed to provide joyful experiences for the children, while helping them to develop skills and intellectual processes that will not only provide for success in the music classroom, but will also carry over into other academic and nonacademic areas. The TK-5 music curriculum provides for creativity and spontaneity as well as structure. The study of the elements of elementary general music - rhythm, melody/pitch, expression, timbre - and the process of learning music skills allow for creative expression in a wide variety of styles.
At Montague Charter Academy, each child in grades TK-1 receives general/vocal music instruction 30 minutes per week and children in grades 2-5 receive 45 minutes every other week. At all grade levels, this program strives to meet the National Standards for Music Education. All students use their voices, their bodies and rhythm instruments to develop their musicianship. Fourth grade students begin playing recorder to further enhance beginning note reading and ear training. Fifth grade students continue their recorder studies, strengthening their sight-reading skills, ensemble playing, and technique. Third through fifth grade students are also given an opportunity to participate in additional extracurricular music opportunities such as the Montague Choir and various musical ensembles/productions.
All students are actively engaged in activities that represent a wide range of musical processes. Classes are characterized by a layered elemental ensemble approach – this begins with speech, movement, and song and then extends to adding ostinatos or accompaniment on non-pitched percussion, barred instruments, and soprano recorders. Icons and Kodaly hand signs are used as a bridge to reading and writing music notation. Activities are adapted for individual differences including cultural diversity, English language learners, and special needs students. The Elementary General Music program provides opportunities for students to demonstrate their skills and abilities – the musical accomplishments of students are presented in assemblies and concerts for the school and community.
The goal of Montague’s performing arts curriculum is to build and develop every child’s musicianship and critical thinking skills – these include: singing, chanting, playing/performing on instruments, moving/dancing, creating, reading/notating, and listening/analyzing/describing. Children are expected to create and expand their knowledge and understanding about the dimensions of music: expression, rhythm, form, melody, timbre, texture and harmony. Students should consider a variety of music from different genres and be able to communicate personal attitudes about and preferences for particular music with informed reasoning. Finally, the performing arts curriculum strives to cultivate a life-long enjoyment of, curiosity about, and appreciation for music on behalf of every child.