Iris R. Davis
This curriculum unit is designed to help fourth and fifth grade students acquire musical and dramatic skills and knowledge. The lessons can be taught in the regular enrichment class and can be completed in less than 30 minutes. It will take approximately nine weeks to complete the entire unit.
By teaching students the contents of this unit they will learn to exhibit performance skills, read and notate musical symbols, and develop skills in working with others. The history of the theater will help students to understand that personal beliefs and societal values influence art forms and styles. Identifying significant works of drama will allow students to understand the diversity between cultures and styles.
As a result of this unit students will be able to recognize the aesthetic qualities of the arts and appreciate the importance of it. They will learn to act, analyze and respond to performances, evaluate the quality of performances, and demonstrate performance disciplines.
Music is worth knowing. It is a field of study with its own special body of knowledge, skills, and ways of thinking. The ability to perform, to create, and to listen to music with understanding is highly desirable for every member of society. An important purpose of the schools is to transmit our cultural heritage to succeeding generations, and music is one of the most glorious manifestations of our cultural heritage.
The schools have an obligation to help each student develop his or her musical potential. Musical potential is one of the basic abilities, along with linguistic potential, physical potential, and others, that exist is every individual. In many persons it remains largely undeveloped throughout life. Music provides an outlet for creativity and for self-expression. It enables us to express our thoughts and feelings, engages our imaginations allowing us to assert our uniqueness.
The study of music can help the student understand better the nature of mankind. It reveals unique aspects of our relationship with other human beings and with our environment. It provides a readily accessible avenue to the study of other cultures and increases the satisfaction that students derive from music and enables them to deal with more sophisticated and complex music raining their level of appreciation, and expanding their musical horizons.
Providing students with opportunities to study the arts benefits the students, schools, and society in important ways. The arts are a key component for the development of the total child. Through the arts students learn to focus on discipline, school atmosphere, various learning styles, commercial vocational applications, creativity, and teamwork.