1ST GRADE: Beginning at the Beginning
In First Grade we begin by setting ourselves 8 major goals:
1. Our first aim, and one that remains an objective throughout the elementary years, is to teach children the conventions of group participation.
2. To introduce a basic music vocabulary. This early and continuous emphasis on vocabulary is important as young students desire and need to know the terminology of the art they are studying.
3. To introduce children to important musical elements, like rhythm and tone color. We begin by developing beat competency, then combining beat and rhythm to make simple compositions.
4. To help children develop rhythmic and tonal memory, establishing a bank of common rhythmic and tonal patterns.
5. To learn rhythmic notation. This new challenge has been delayed until now so as to be certain that your children have had enough experience with rhythm and beat to understand the need to remember them through notation.
6. To learn some of the basics of accompaniment, after they are comfortable with notation of simple rhythms.
7. To focus on melody, specifically pitch syllables. As we all know, singing in tune is difficult for many young children. Only after meeting the challenge of singing in tune do we introduce pitch syllables (do, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti, do'). By the end of the year, a majority of students should be able to sing, play and improvise with at least two pitches, so and mi.
8. To develop listening skills with music in binary (AB) form.
Largo - Very slow
Presto - Very fast
Piano - Quiet
Forte - Loud
Ostinato - Repeated rhythm
Body Percussion - Stomp, pat, clap, snap, etc.
Solfege - Do, Mi, So, La
Quarter Notes / Rests
Phrase - A musical sentence
Baroque - Fancy music from 1600 - 1750
Form - The way music is organized into same or different sections