Because of the success of the Arts Education Branch's Elementary Arts Program, more and more students are entering middle school with skills and experience in the arts. Middle schools and high schools are encouraged to seek out ways to continue the musical and artistic growth of its students by providing extensive offerings of both beginning, intermediate and advanced courses. Students' skill levels will vary because of differences in their interests, talents, and experiences. Not all will elect to participate in performing groups, but each student should have the opportunity in school to learn to perform, create, and appreciate music.
The study of music helps students to develop their potential, gives them an understanding of their own culture and the culture of others, and provides a unique vehicle for achieving excellence either alone or in cooperation with others. Some discover talents leading to careers in music and related fields; all will find that music can enrich their lives.
Music is intellectually stimulating and challenging. Music is a discipline which expresses and elicits feelings that are emotionally compelling, while at the same time challenges the mind to think and process information innovatively and creatively.
For these reasons, a strong and comprehensive program of music instruction -- including general music, various performing groups, and diverse elective offerings -- should be an essential component of the curriculum in every school.
Pathways for Delivering Sequential Music Programmming (3+ years for each pathway):
- Choir Pathway
- String Orchestra Pathway (could include mariachi)
- Band Pathway (could include jazz ensemble and marching band at the high school level)
- Guitar and/or Modern Band Pathway
- Piano Pathway
Other electives available include: General Music (middle school) or Music History (high school), Music Technology, and Music Theory (including AP Music Theory)
It is highly recommended that teachers chosen to deliver instruction in any of these pathways are highly experienced to teach that pathway. It is rare for one teacher to be capable in teaching more than two pathways. In addition, if a teacher is requested to teach more than two pathways, there is not enough time in the instructional day to offer beginning, intermediate and advanced levels within the pathway; therefore, in the long range planning of growing the music program, additional teachers should be hired to ensure the highest quality program for the students.