In first grade, the students are continue working on the fundamentals of music with an emphasis on vocabulary. We discuss rhythm and beat, melody and pitch, song construction, accompaniment as well as visually and aurally identifying the three major classifications of instruments: Percussion, Wind and String.
Rhythm is taught through large muscle movement, such as dance and pantomime, and the children start to learn how to notate. Melody and pitch are taught through singing and the Glockenspiel (xylophone). Great emphasis is placed on getting the students to use their proper singing voice, as these are the crucial years in their musical development.
The composers that we discuss the most this year are John Phillip Sousa and Franz Joseph Haydn. Sousa's Marches really get the kids up and moving. Below is a link to a great CD of his music. I recommend you pick it up for your child. It's a great way to wake up in the morning!