Preschool Music classes cultivate an active appreciation of the performing arts. Music is explored through singing, listening, playing instruments, and composing. Student involvement in these activities enhances creativity and imagination.
Lower School Music
Lower School music students develop an enjoyment and appreciation of music; have confidence in their singing and playing abilities; gain familiarity with various styles and cultures of music and begin to develop preferences; build a repertoire of songs and games, and acquire knowledge of history and humanities through listening experiences with great masterworks and composers. Kindergarten through Second-grade music students experience music through singing, body percussion, and Orff percussion instruments. Third-grade music students begin to apply their music learning to the recorder, fourth-grade musicians learn to play the ukulele, and fifth-grade students broaden their scope of musical possibilities by being introduced to band instruments, and learning how to sing as a chorus.
5th Grade Music: Instrument Exploration (Half Year) and Ukulele Instrument Exploration (Half Year)
During Instrument Exploration, fifth-grade students learn about instrument families in the orchestra including strings, woodwind, brass, and percussion. Through demonstrations, listening to music for each instrument, and also playing the instruments, students will grow in their appreciation of music performance.
Fifth-grade students will review the Ukulele skills learned in the fourth-grade, before learning more of the higher skills, including major and minor chords. As their skills improve, fifth-grade students will continue to develop their ability to practice and perform as an Ensemble, demonstrating teamwork and awareness.
Middle School Music
Sixth Grade Fine Arts Rotation
In Sixth Grade Choir, students learn to practice proper techniques for healthy, successful singing. Students work on posture, breath control, ear training, basic musicianship skills, reading music, and performance habits. From exercises that promote tuning the voice to daily warm-ups that require students to master the physicality of singing, students grow their knowledge of their voices and the skill of singing with others. Sixth-grade choir students prepare for a performance at Spring Fine Arts Night and use this performance as an opportunity to showcase what they’ve learned.
Sixth Grade Band (Full Year)
In Sixth Grade Band, students learn to play an instrument of their own selection from woodwinds, brass, or percussion instruments. Throughout the year, students continue to develop their fundamental skills of making a nice sound on the instrument and reading rhythms and notes on the music staff. Performance skills are learned through individual practice as well as rehearsal in instrument sections and full class ensemble. Students grow their knowledge and appreciation of music by learning to play melodies of music from different eras, composers, and genres, and through an introduction in music theory. Sixth-grade band students play together as a large ensemble for Fine Arts Night in December and in small and large ensembles for Fine Arts Night in April.
Seventh and Eighth Grade Band (Full Year)
Students continue to build their skills of playing their instrument individually and playing as an ensemble. The range of notes is expanded, rhythms become more complex and ensemble music includes harmony within the instrument section as well as the full ensemble. Music history, music theory, and music listening including different composers, performers, and eras are part of the class. 7th/8th Grade Band students learn basic scales and two études to participate in Middle School Region Band auditions as part of the Association of Texas Small School Bands (ATSSB) of Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA). The students are part of the Rockin’ Rams! Pep Band that plays for pep rallies and home varsity football games. Students prepare full ensemble music for Veterans Day Assembly, perform concert music for Fine Arts Night in December, and prepare duets, trios, and concert music to perform on Fine Arts Night in April.
Sixth Grade Orchestra (Full Year)
Students in Beginning Orchestra choose an instrument between violin, cello, and bass. They spend their introductory year learning the basics of music theory, and the technique of their instrument. Students learn how to play independently and as a small ensemble within their class.
Seventh and Eighth Grade Orchestra (Full Year)
In this course, students are typically advancing in their study of string instruments from the previous year. Students are now able to combine in performing with upper school Orchestra, and are continuing in their study of music theory, becoming more advanced in their knowledge of complex rhythms and harmony. 7th/8th Grade Orchestra students participate in the Junior TAPPS competition in the fall trimester, prepare music for the Veterans Day Assembly in November, and perform various solo/ensemble pieces at the Winter / Spring Fine Arts performances. In the spring, all Orchestra students take part in a volunteer community service activity, performing for local members of our community.
Upper School Music
Upper School Band (Full Year)
Upper School Band students continue to expand their knowledge and application of musical terms, musical notation, music theory, music appreciation, and instrumental performance techniques. During class, rehearsals occur in small groups and through rotation of individual instruction. During the fall, Upper School Band students lead the “Rockin’ Rams!” Pep Band for pep rallies and home varsity football games. Throughout the year, music selections include different musical eras, composers, and genres, with ensembles that can also include students from the Upper School Orchestra class. Music is prepared for performance in concert ensemble for Veterans Day Assembly, Fine Arts Night in December, and small ensembles, solos, and full ensemble for Fine Arts Night in April. Upper School Band students prepare scales in the full range of the instrument and two études to audition for High School Region Band as part of the Association of Texas Small School Bands (ATSSB) of Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA). Students also share their talents and enthusiasm for music by presenting a recital performance for a local retirement community and for other community events where they are invited to perform. In the spring, students prepare a solo or small ensemble selection for the TAPPS Solo/Ensemble event and receive awards as well as comments from the adjudicator to advance their performance skills. Upper School Band students can apply and audition for leadership positions in the band of Drum Major, Band President, and Vice President. The students are also encouraged to continue their interest in music outside of Allen Academy by participating in the Brazos Valley Community Band, attending concerts in the community, and participating in summer band camp.
Upper School Orchestra (Full Year)
The students in Upper School Orchestra bring their own instruments to class and play the violin, viola, cello, or string bass. Most students in Upper School Orchestra have a background reading music and playing basic notes and rhythms on their instrument. Students study music and composers from different eras and learn how to conduct an ensemble. The String Ensemble performs for Fine Arts Night in December and in April. Through performance, students learn the value of advanced preparation, working together, and professional presentation. Upper School Orchestra students prepare scales in the full range of the instrument and two études to audition for the High School Region Orchestra. Students also participate in the TAPPS Solo & Ensemble and ISAS Arts Festival in the Spring.