My name is Mrs. Rokosz and I am Washington School’s Vocal/General music teacher. The primary goal of vocal/general music is that over five years, students will develop not only a love and appreciation for music, but a solid foundation in the basic knowledge, skills and techniques used by musicians. This will include exploring musical works, composers, performers, cultures and history. Students will also learn to read and perform music in class and at performances during the year. Many times the students will cross different subject areas such as social studies, science, mathematics and language arts while following the New Jersey Core Content Standards.
In the first and second grades, there will be vocal development through singing games and the exploration of basic music fundamentals. Students will begin to read simple rhythms and melodies. Students will also play percussion instruments and participate in activities that inspire expressive movement.
During the third grade, students will continue their music enrichment and build upon skills acquired in previous years. They will start reading complex rhythms and even start composing their own music. The students will learn about instruments of the orchestra which may inspire them join the school’s band or orchestra in 4th grade.
By fourth and fifth grade, students will continue to build a solid foundation in the fundamentals of music. They will learn about music history, genres, and composers. Students will continue to learn about using their voice as a powerful instrument to express themselves. Fourth and fifth graders will be invited to participate in the school chorus where they will apply their knowledge and skills in two performances a year. Whether students participate in chorus or not, students leaving the fifth grade will have a solid understanding of the fundamentals of music which they will take with them on their journey to middle school.