Students earn grades in four areas marked on Report Cards:
Sings with accurate pitch • Plays & improvises on instruments
Reads notation/demonstrates concepts • Learning Habits
Below is a description of how students in grades 1-5 earn their report card grades.
(Kindergarten music instruction by a licensed music specialist in not currently being provided)
Each grade a child earns outside that of an "1" is a mark to be proud of based on the assumption it was the best effort. When comparing one trimester to the next, please note that only 14 hours of music instruction occur each marking period. With 4 major area to focus on, that leaves not a lot of time for huge amounts instruction and practice in which to make progress.
Sings with accurate pitch
Music class involves singing to develop concepts, solidify instrumental parts, read, and create a musical experience.
Singing is a developmental skill. EVERYONE who can speak can sing, although some (such as in every subject of study) need more practice than others. Although talent is a part of everything from math to writing, with quality instruction and student effort all can meet basic skills. Music is no different than any other content area.
4 Sings alone and with others exceeding grade level expectations, effortlessly learns melodies and harmonies, uses a fully breath supported sound, is a constant model of quality singing for others, and never needs singing reminders. Uses complexity in vocal productions that shows further inquiry and extended learning. 3 Sings alone and with others at grade level expectations, learns melodies and harmonies, uses a fully breath supported sound, is a sometimes a model of quality singing for others, and never needs singing reminders. 2 Diligently works to sing alone and with others, can sing the words of melodies, uses a fully breath supported sound with reminders, and never needs singing reminders. Click here to see a vocal development chart. 1 Not yet able or refuses to participate in singing activities in class Plays Instruments Instruments help us extend our learning of concepts like beat, rhythm and melody; allow us to create musical colors that our voices alone could not; and accompany our singing. 4 Uses instruments with proper technique and plays concepts above grade level. Uses complexity in instrumental technique that shows further inquiry and extended learning. 3 Uses instruments with proper technique and plays concepts at grade level with rare and relatively insignificant mistakes. 2 Not consistently using instruments with proper technique and is somewhat able to demonstrate concepts or play grade level melodies or other rhythmic/harmonic patterns. 1 Not yet able to use instruments with proper technique and not yet able to demonstrate concepts or play grade level melodies or other rhythmic/harmonic patterns. Reads notation/demonstrates concepts Reading notation involves both ability to sing/play and ability to write it. Reading and writing notation incorporates both rhythm and melody, although often not at the same time. 4 Has an understanding of concepts well above grade level and is able to demonstrate them while performing, creating, or responding to music. Uses complexity that shows further inquiry and extended learning. 3 Understands concepts at grade level and is able to demonstrate them in performance and writing with rare and relatively insignificant mistakes. 2 Not consistently demonstrating conceptual understanding when performing, creating, or responding to music. 1 Not yet able to to demonstrate conceptual understanding when performing, creating, or responding to music. Learning Habits Willing participation is of utmost importance in the music classroom. Academic markings often have strong correlation to participation. If a student is not participating appropriately or willingly, it is difficult to judge their skill and understanding of concepts. + Participates fully and consistently, has all materials for class, returns all assignments, shows constant leadership in activities, anticipates expectations, and helps others +/- Participates fully and constantly with an occasional reminder, often has all materials for class, returns some assignments. - Struggles to consistently participate even with reminders, often missing materials, and has few or no returned assignments
Special thanks to Paul Weller at Jefferson Elementary for his help with this page.