The curriculum for all schools in the Catholic Diocese of Arlington can be viewed here.
The music curriculum is based on a 'building blocks' approach. The youngest students will be introduced to music via story songs and games and sung parts of the Mass. Singing and playing unpitched percussion instruments is important to these younger students.
Eventually students are introduced to more advanced concepts like note recognition, both in terms of note name and note value. By second grade, students can name notes on the treble staff and can compose lyrics to existing melodies. Composers are discussed and their compositions appreciated.
Third graders and up will be able to play pitched instruments (recorder, xylophone) and create their own compositions.
Middle school students will choose music electives based on their own areas of interest. Examples of music electives include Socially Conscious Popular Music, 21st Century Composers, World Cultures Music, Digital Composition, School Musical, World Music Drumming, and Ukulele.
All students in grades 3-8 may choose to participate in chorus and sing at Mass, with middle school students serving as cantors.
Grades 4 and up may elect to participate in band via the Garwood Whaley program provided through the diocese and our school.
Volunteers for assistance with the music discipline are welcomed. Pianists or organists often provide accompaniment for Mass with the chorus, and often for live performances at Christmas and for the school musical. Costume assistance is also welcomed during the Christmas show (nativity pageant) and the school musical. VIRTUS certified parents may also serve as chaperones at special events, to include chorus performances at Wolf Trap or other venues.
Diocesan Policy for the protection of children requires all parents wishing to volunteer for their students’ classes, activities and field trips be VIRTUS certified. For more information on how to become VIRTUS certified, please click on the "VIRTUS" link.
According to the Diocesan Policy, all volunteers are required to submit the necessary Diocesan paperwork prior to volunteering. Paperwork should be processed and “cleared” before anyone can begin his/her service in the School. If you are not compliant, parents will not be allowed into the school to interact with children in the classroom, cafeteria, playground, field trips, field day, parties, coaching, special classes, science fair, etc.
Music supplies are minimal, and are embedded within a student's particular grade-level supplies list. It is usually a folder for younger students, or a binder or portion of an expandable folder for older students. Most assignments in middle school are electronic whenever practical, and able to be done on their school chromebooks.
School Policies and Protocols
Please click on the "Parent/Student Handbook" link for questions on school policy and procedures. Each family must sign and return the handbook agreement form.
Communications will occur via the web page for events or announcements affecting whole classes, grades, or even the entire school. Parents should subscribe to their student's music class for any information, updates, mass communications, or events added to the music calendar. Chorus and drama parents will find this particularly effective since there is no 'class' which groups these students, but any changes made by the teacher will automatically notify subscribers on a daily basis.
Individual emails will be addressed in kind. Please be aware that the music teacher does not work at STS on Thursdays, and therefore may not respond until the next working day.