9th & 10th Grade
Music Appreciation

Grade 9 Music Appreciation
(Syllabus linked above)

Music appreciation grade 9 is designed to level the playing field for our incoming students. Since Sturgis is a charter school, students come from an array of music education backgrounds with varying levels of experience and knowledge. 

In this course, students are encouraged to dust off their old instruments or pick up a new one to learn about the essential elements of music making in a relevant, hands on, approachable manner. Students learn about music vocabulary and performance skills through the lens of contemporary music history, focusing on the roots of popular music beginning with blues and jazz music. Students learn the basic skills of piano, guitar, and drums to spark interest and give the essentials for future autonomous learning. An emphasis is put on listening to and understanding the music of today and clearly describing/dissecting why we like it.

Two homework assignments are required of students in this course, the Favorite Musician Project and the Concert Critique. 

Grade 10 Music Appreciation
(Syllabus linked above)

Music appreciation grade 10 builds on the previous homogenous knowledge students acquired in grade 9 music. The emphasis in this course is to begin understanding the frameworks and types of project expectations students will be required to complete in the 11th and 12th grade IB music course while continuing to grow passion and knowledge about contemporary musics.

This course begins in the 1950s with the emergence of rock n' roll. Students create their own songs (and lyrics) from scratch in groups to perform based on the conventions of blues and early rock music. 

Going into the 1960s, students learn about Psychedelic Rock and the Functions of Film music to create their own Film Score/Soundtrack in groups.

In the 1970s and beyond, students are given the opportunity to create their own Rap with a pre-created or self-created backing track. They conclude with a small final quiz.

Like 9th grade music, two homework assignments are required of students in this course, the Individual Project (similar to the FMP but requiring more depth/options) and the Concert Critique.