Curriculum

“In Orff Schulwerk classrooms, children begin with what they do instinctively: play!

Imitation, experimentation, and personal expression occur naturally as students become confident, life-long musicians and creative problem solvers. The Orff approach to teaching is a model for optimal learning in 21st Century classrooms.

Orff Schulwerk is designed for all children, not just the privileged, talented, or selected few. It is designed so every child can succeed! Orff-certified teachers design non-competitive atmospheres where one of the rewards is the pleasure of making good music with others.”

When visiting an Orff classroom, you will see students moving, speaking and singing, listening and responding to the music of different cultures and time periods, playing instruments of all kinds, reading and notating music, and creating. And all of this takes place with an emphasis on the end result being student creativity in different mediums.

Students do not need to be musically talented, have years of private lessons, or very involved parents. A well-built and well-taught Orff class will take the student wherever they are and expand on that learning. The structure of the class is designed so that ALL students succeed.


Kindergarten

Kindergarten music is about experiencing music in a fun way and developing new skills. The most important skills that Kindergarten students learn involve steady beat and matching pitch in singing. We are constantly working on these skills because they provide a foundation for music in the upper grades. Currently, the music grade on your child’s progress report is decided by the classroom teacher and is based on their participation in music activities within the general education classroom. However, feel free to email me if you would like a report on your child’s progress in my class. I evaluate students based on the Nevada State Music Standards and the CCSD Objectives for their grade level.

Instruments that Kindergarten students play are usually small unpitched percussion including maracas, guiros, wood blocks, tambourines, and hand drums. Late in the Full-day Kindergarten year, students will be exposed to instruments with bars such as xylophones. They will learn how to hold mallets correctly, where on the bars to play, and how to play correctly to make the best sound.

First Grade

First-grade music is about building a foundation of skills that will extend into the following years. A large part of First Grade music is about reviewing and cementing the skills learned in Kindergarten.

Learning about music comes naturally with participation and experience. Students that participate consistently in class will gather a wealth of knowledge that will help them grow as musicians and good citizens.

Instruments that First Grade students play are usually small unpitched percussion including maracas, guiros, wood blocks, tambourines, and hand drums. After sufficient practice in their First Grade year, students will be exposed to instruments with bars, such as xylophones, for the first time. They will learn how to hold mallets correctly, where on the bars to play, and how to play correctly to make the best sound.

 Second grade

Second-grade students learn to take instrument playing to the next level, especially at the barred instruments. Second-grade instrument players take their movements that were previously done in both hands at the same time and work on moving and playing with hands and feet moving at different times. Developing independent motion with the sides of the body is a key skill with regards to movement and instrument play.

Learning about music comes naturally with participation and experience. Students that participate consistently in class will gather a wealth of knowledge that will help them grow as musicians and good citizens.

 Third Grade

Third-grade students learn to move and play instruments in ways that challenge them beyond anything they have previously studied. With regards to movement and playing at the barred instruments, students learn to develop a pattern that crosses the body’s mid-line. This is an important skill in the development of coordination. The highlight of the Third-grade year, however, is when students learn to play the soprano recorder in the middle of the school year.

Learning about music comes naturally with participation and experience. Students that participate consistently in class will gather a wealth of knowledge that will help them grow as musicians and good citizens.

 Fourth Grade

Fourth-grade students learn to move and play instruments in ways that challenge them beyond anything they have previously studied. The highlight of the Fourth-grade year is when students learn to play the alto recorder late in the school year if time permits.

Learning about music comes naturally with participation and experience. Students that participate consistently in class will gather a wealth of knowledge that will help them grow as musicians and good citizens. In addition, students who are disruptive to the learning process of others will be removed from active participation and placed on a paper/book-learning experience until they demonstrate self-control and care toward others.

Fifth Grade

Fifth grade is a display of everything the students have learned in addition to new material. Students experience playing accompaniment in chords (similar to guitar chords) and learn to feel and perform music in different meters.

Learning about music comes naturally with participation and experience. Students that participate consistently in class will gather a wealth of knowledge that will help them grow as musicians and good citizens. In addition, students who are disruptive to the learning process of others will be removed from active participation and placed on a paper/book-learning experience until they demonstrate self-control and care toward others.

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