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Stephanie Ransome Email         5th Grade Percussion Ensemble Sign-Up Letter - click here

It is both exciting and rewarding to see the students, faculty, and community of Beaverdam synergizing through various activities provided by the music program.

The curriculum is designed to integrate with the classroom curriculum and is based on the Orff-Schulwerk approach. This approach embraces the philosophy that experience should precede conceptualization. It is an inductive approach in which multiple experiences involving speech, rhythm, moving, singing, and playing instruments are integrated so that students make and participate in music before learning how music is notated. A culture of community is created in this approach because every student is involved as an active participant rather than merely a spectator.

Xylophones, metallaphones, glockenspiels, and a wide variety of unpitched percussion instruments create an exciting "hands on" environment for weekly music classes.  African style tubano drums are a particular favorite!  Ukuleles are used to introduce form and chord structure in third grade.Students study the recorder and start reading traditional melodic music notation in 4th grade.

Listening, moving to and discussing all styles of music is also an important part of the curriculum.  We discuss the title, composer, time period, and instrumentation.  Through each piece we explore other countries, cultures, and periods of history.

Singing together is a powerful way to build confidence and community within a class. Using solfege and a sight reading website, students learn how to sight sing traditional notes and rhythms. Our Song of the Month lets us explore traditional folk songs and keeps us working together as a team.

In addition to weekly music instruction, older students have the opportunity to participate in music ensembles.  4th and 5th graders may join the Beaverdam Chorus, which rehearses during the school day. There are no auditions for Chorus – all that is required is a positive attitude and a commitment to rehearsals and performances.  We focus on the fundamentals of good choral singing, including posture, breathing, diction, tone quality, and singing in parts.  Performances include the Winter and Spring Concerts, Leadership day, community events, and the Hanover County Arts and Science Festival. 

5th graders may participate in Percussion Ensemble, which rehearses after school on Tuesdays from 3 – 4 pm.  Auditions are required for Percussion Ensemble, and take place during regular music class.  The Percussion Ensemble performs at the Winter and Spring Concerts.  We perform songs from cultures around the world using both pitched and unpitched percussion instruments.

All students are encouraged to audition for the school’s annual Talent Showcase, which takes place each June.  We always have a wide variety of acts, from Irish dancing to Tae Kwan Do board breaking to rock bands . . .  The Beaverdam Beavers definitely have talent!



Address: 15485 Beaverdam School Rd, Beaverdam, VA 23015        Tel: 804.449.6373        Fax: 804.449.6510      Email: Webmaster