Our approach to music education is a simple one; our students are always focused on learning a range of skills that support their natural appreciation for music. Whether our babies are shaking maracas or our 8th graders are creating covers of their favorite songs on the guitar, we strive to inspire our students to find joy in music.
And our program goes beyond singing and instruments, although both are highly important to us. Students tune their whole selves to the beats and rhythms of various kinds of music through movement and dance. They study traditional and modern composers, music videos, and sounds from other cultures. Middle schoolers create their own trailer and movie soundtracks in GarageBand. It's all about encouraging our students to build their confidence in their musical abilities and feel proud to share it with others.
Learn More About Music Below or Check Out These Other Pages that Might Interest You:
Middle School Students
Participate in the Chorale
How Old Our Youngest Students are when They Begin Having Music Class with a Specialized Teacher
Concerts per School Year Featuring
All Preschool - 8th Grade Students
CHORALE SINGS NATIONAL ANTHEM
The Congressional Chorale is made up of middle students interested in fine tuning their singing abilities. And they have! For the past three years, our students have sung the National Anthem at professional sports games around DC. In 2017 they sang at a DC United game; in 2018 at a Nats game, and in 2019 at another DC United game (this one was nationally televised).
In addition to also performing at our school concerts, our students have also traveled to Hershey Park, Busch Gardens, and Sunrise Senior Living Community.
MIDDLE SCHOOL ELECTIVES
Our 6th through 8th grade students take three choice electives every school year. During the 2018-2019 school year, these music electives, along with many other subject area electives, were offered.
The Jam Sesh elective during the 2018-2019 school year was a popular elective offered to middle school students. Once in the class, the students collaborate to choose a band name and create a logo. They then agree on a couple of songs and jam together, capitalizing on the various musical skills that each student brings to the band.
Our Jam Sesh bands have played during our Grandparents and Special Friends Day celebration, Winter Concert, and Spring Arts Showcase.
While our students do study guitar in class, our guitar elective allows for interested students to go beyond the basics. They dig deeper into guitar playing by learning more chords and strumming patterns. Plus, with a more focused group, the students can customize their experience by choosing songs of more specific interest to them.
The guitar elective has also had the opportunity to play at our Winter Concert for our whole community.
COMPOSER OF THE MONTH
Our kindergarten through 3rd grade students begin every music class learning about a famous musical artist. The artists rotate on a monthly basis. 3rd graders even choose the artists themselves and their choices vary widely!
Our 4th through 8th graders begin each music class with SQUILT—Super Quick Uninterrupted Listening Time. During this time, they watch a music video and discuss what they saw. What genre was it? What instruments were involved? How do you feel about the artistic decisions?
BECOMING THEIR OWN COMPOSERS
We strive to provide ways for all of our students to connect with music. Our 4th through 8th grade students dive each year into a new Garage Band project. Students learn to compose their own music, whether it be for a radio show, scary story reading, TV show intro or a movie trailer.
On Musical Share Days, students have the chance to share something musical with their class. They bring in instruments, sing favorite songs, write music, & more! We want them to find & share the ways they personally love & connect to the arts! #CongressionalSchool pic.twitter.com/4QTzzJIdaC— Congressional School (@Colts1939) January 25, 2019