Learning in music ensemble classes is most effective when students are actively involved and have quality aural experiences. Performing in large groups, chamber ensembles, or alone utilizing a large variety of styles (eg. jazz, aleatoric, world music) and representing a wide array of musics, musical eras (eg. Renaissance, Baroque) and music cultures (eg. mariachi, shape note singing, gamelan), active listening, creating, moving to music, and independent projects result in deeper learning than just rehearsing and performing. The ensemble experience, therefore, should provide opportunities for performing, creating (eg. warm up improvisation, student generated melodies and theme), responding (eg. written, movement, improvisation) and making connections to other arts, disciplines, cultures, and personal life.
- Throughout history, people have played instruments as accompaniment, for communication, and as an important means of personal expression. Instrumental music thus has a unique history and a body of quality literature written for particular instruments or groups of instruments.
- Singing is a basic means of musical expression in all cultures. Learning proper use of the voice in singing and speaking from an early age is vital for effective communication. Students’ ability to use the voice effectively in singing opens the door to personal fulfillment and expression as well as to valuable activities in the school and community.
*Standards maps may be reproduced provided that credit is given to the WMEA Standards Committee.