Mane Attraction Advanced Ensemble Syllabus


Instructor

Instructor:  Jimmy D. Price, M.A.Ed.
School Phone:  (910) 653-4073  Extension 37116
Email:  jprice@columbus.k12.nc.us
Blog:  http://schssingingstallions.blogspot.com  
Remind Messaging System:  Text @maneattra2 to 81010

Course Description

The study of vocal music is cumulative and sequential to include learning from previous levels. Students who have completed a K-8th grade program of instruction in vocal/choral music will be enrolled in the Intermediate level standards. After completion of Intermediate level coursework, students will be enrolled in Proficient and Advanced level standards.  A performance-based class, concerts and performances are an important aspect of music study; additionally, the daily processes of critical thinking and developing students’ musical abilities are vital.  Students will perform music at difficulty levels III-IV in at least three (3) parts with and without accompaniment in concerts, competitions, adjudication, and vocal/choral music festivals.  

Course Objectives

While in choral music, students will be engaged in a great deal of learning experiences, many of which are above and beyond singing:
  • Learn, memorize and perform a variety of choral styles appropriate to developmental abilities (standards, sacred, popular, classical, etc.);
  • Perform rhythmic, melodic and harmonic patterns via sight-singing and performance literature;
  • Apply musical elements and theoretical components to all choral literature and repertoire;
  • Perform in a variety of concert settings;
  • Create and maintain a positive learning environment by working as a learning team towards a common goal of musical and creative excellence;
  • Through listening and viewing, experience choral performances to develop and enhance listening skills;
  • Critically evaluate choral performances, applying previously-mastered choral technique skills;
  • Build upon previous vocal/choral technique skills, including but not limited to:  appropriate singing posture, proper diction, breath support, choral tone and resonance, among others;
  • Extend and apply knowledge pertaining to the physiological/anatomical foundations of proper vocal technique;
  • Apply and embody proper performance/concert etiquette skills.

Materials/Supplies

  • Three-Ring Binder (Size:  1” or 1½”)
  • Tab Dividers (No more than 5)
  • Loose-Leaf Paper
  • Pencils/Erasers (Pens are not allowed!!)
  • Highlighters (Multiple Colors)
  • Electornic Portfolio Access (Proficient & Advanced Students)

Course Fees

Course Fee: $20.00   In a time of budget constraints, it is essential that students pay their fees in a timely manner.  All fees accumulate and must be paid prior to graduation; it is much less of a financial burden to pay fees each semester.  The choral music department relies on course fees in order to purchase music and classroom materials in order to provide the best possible education to each student; therefore, please endeavor to pay fees by the second week of class.

Honors Credit Placement

Individual students are responsible for their specific progress within the standards. The teacher/director maintains a mastery checklist of each concept that should be covered during the semester. At the conclusion of the semester, each student's progress will determine their placement the subsequent semester. Ratings are as follow:
  • Intermediate (Standard Credit)
  • Proficient (Honors Credit)
  • Advanced (Honors Credit)
*Individual students placed in the Proficient and Advanced levels are tasked with developing a web-based, electronic portfolio, documenting individual progress throughout the semester. This portfolio will be developed and maintained independently by each individual student; they will present it at the conclusion of the semester in order to receive the additional honors credit quality point towards their overall grade point average (GPA).

Grading/Evaluation Policies

The nature of the choral program is unique; however, many similarities with other classes will be present.  First and foremost, studying music is AN ACADEMIC ENDEAVOR.  Just as a student has to put forth effort in social studies or math, music will require them to put forth similar effort in order to be successful.  Please understand that choral music is NOT an easy class, in which students will simply sing popular music with no academic standards or rigor. Quite the contrary, many students find that studying music is very enjoyable, yet rigorous.  In actuality, many mathematical and language concepts will be incorporated into class assignments, such as writing and pattern recognition.  Grades are representative of individual students’ effort and mastery of content.  Students will be required to bring all materials daily (refer to Materials/Supplies section), as well as participate in classroom/rehearsal activities, whether individual, small group, or whole group.  Formally, grading/evaluation in choral music are based upon the following criteria:
  • Ensemble Performance:  Ensemble Blend and Balance, Technical Accuracy, Intonation, Stylistic Interpretation, Effort and Attitude.
  • Individual Performance:  Vocal Technique, Musicianship and Accuracy of Musical Elements, Effort and Attitude, Written Assignments and Tests.
  • Public Performance:  Any Performance for an audience of any size, at any level.
6-Week Grading Period Grade Categories
  • 25% Daily Classwork & Participation; Daily Rehearsals & Sectionals; Written Assignments
  • 75% Weekly Vocal Tests; Quizzes; Tests; All Performances--Rehearsals and Concerts

Final Course Grade Categories
  • 25% 1st 6-Weeks Final Grade
  • 25% 2nd 6-Weeks Final Grade
  • 25% 3rd 6-Weeks Final Grade
  • 25% Final Exam
Please Note: All grades are calculated strictly utilizing the Columbus County Schools grading policy.

    Classroom/Rehearsal Discipline Policy

    PHILOSOPHY AND RATIONALE: Discipline is vital to any circumstances in which human beings are participants; not merely at school, but also in the workplace, in the community, at church, and any other setting, individuals must conduct themselves in an appropriate manner as to maintain order.  Students, as well, are to maintain self-discipline while at school.  Classroom rules are kept to a bare minimum, as students at the high school level are well-aware of behavior expectations, as well as what is deemed appropriate and inappropriate.  Above all, students must exhibit an appropriate level of respect and respectability; they must display respect to others, as well as conduct themselves in ways that will allow others to return the same level of respect to them.  Unruly students will NOT be tolerated, as it is a blatant disruption to the learning process for others in the class; these students will be dealt with according to their offense.  The teacher will never disrespect students; discipline will be afforded, but under no circumstances will humiliation, bullying, intimidation tactics, or any similar means be employed in the choral program, by students nor teacher.  At all costs and in every situation, the dignity of each human being (children and adults) will be upheld; this is a non-negotiable.  Students will be explicitly instructed in the proper procedures of conduct while in the choral music classroom, as well as while engaged in any program-sponsored activity.  If a student makes the unfortunate decision to disrespect themselves, other students, and/or the teacher, they will be disciplined accordingly.  The school handbook will be followed, and proper disciplinary action will be administered as deemed necessary by the teacher and/or school-level administration.  

    CLASSROOM DISCIPLINE PROCEDURES: Each student receives a total of four (4) points per day earned toward their ACADEMIC GRADE--two (2) for listening and two (2) for participation. Each student maintains their point levels if they do the following:

    • listen quietly and attentively while the teacher is giving direction or providing classroom instruction;
    • actively participate in ALL activities  (Please refer to the Active Participation Policy).

    At the end of each week, each student's point balance is used to calculate their weekly classroom participation grade, which represents 25% of their course grade.

    If unacceptable student behavior arises, the following policy will be applied. 

    • The student will be deducted one (1) point for the first minor offense; 
    • The student will be deducted an additional point for the second minor offense, as well as a student-teacher conference immediately after class period has ended.
    • If minor offenses persist, the student will be referred to administration, following school-level discipline procedures.
    • Please Note:  For serious offenses, the student will be referred directly to administration, following school-level discipline procedures. 


    Active Participation Policy

    Showing up and actively participating are two very different things. Student grades are representative of their active participation in the ensemble. The following guidelines govern the variances between the active and passive behaviors in the choral music classroom:
    • Have a positive mental attitude.
    • Concentrate and work on the the task at hand.
    • Give a positive effort during EVERY activity/rehearsal.
    • Have all materials (i.e., music, pencil, etc.) at the beginning of every rehearsal.
    • Employ correct posture and breath support during singing.
    • Refrain from food, drink (except water), candy, and gum in the classroom and during rehearsals.
    • Ensure the voice is in good working condition. In the event, the students is have vocal issues, they should notify the teacher, immediately upon entering the classroom. The singer will only be excused from actual singing if this has taken place. An alternate assignment will be provided in written form, summarizing and/or critiquing the rehearsal.
    • Maintain total musical and personal responsibility within the ensemble.
    • Refrain from tobacco products, as there is a ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY on campus. Any student in possession or using tobacco products will be referred to school administration immediately.

    Attendance Policy

    As the nature of choral music in performance, many of the activities in class are participatory and performance-based. Therefore, it is extremely difficult for students to make-up work that is missed, as it is performance-based. At times, it will be required that students complete make-up assignments that require performance-based activities; however, these are determined by the classwork missed on the day of absence. Students must sign in on the posted class roster immediately upon entering the classroom, daily; each student will note the actual time they entered the classroom. This documentation is utilized to input daily attendance into PowerSchool, which becomes the official record of student attendance.

    Please Note: Any student who is absent more that ten (10) days during the academic semester will automatically receive a failing final course grade for the semester.


    Tardy Policy

    Any student entering the classroom after the tardy bell shall be marked tardy. The following policy will apply:
    • Tardy 1: Initial Warning
    • Tardy 2: Final Warning
    • Tardy 3: 1 Day of ISS (In-School Suspension)
    • Tardy 4: 2 Days of ISS
    • Tardy 5: 3 Days of ISS
    • Tardy 6+: Disciplinary Referral to School Administration
    This policy will stand in all circumstances; please do not ask otherwise.

    Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) Policy

    Students have the opportunity to bring devices such as cell phones, tablets, Chromebooks, laptops, etc. into the classroom. When utilized properly, these technological devices enhance the educational experience and promote 21st century learning. However, the following guidelines govern use of these in the classroom setting:
    • It is a privilege, not a right to use privately owned technology in the classroom setting. Therefore, it the sole right of the teacher to revoke that privilege in their individual classroom, if and when the technology is being employed inappropriately. Examples include, but are not limited to the following: texting during class, Internet use during imappropriate times, video recording at ANY TIME ofther than when given explicit permission to do so with WRITTEN APPROVAL, and for SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONAL PURPOSES. Please be reminded that with freedom comes much responsibility and once violated, consequences will match the offense.
    • Students are not allowed to make or receive phone calls during class, for any reason.
    • Violation of the BYOT Policy in any way will result in any combination of the following consequences: In-School Suspension (ISS), Confiscation of Technology Device(s); Temporary Loss of Privileges; Out-of-School Suspension (OSS); Permanent Loss of Privileges.

    Audition Groups Policy

    Throughout the semester, for specified performances, it may be necessary to assemble smaller ensembles to perform. These may include, but are not limited to, performance opportunities specifically for proficient and advanced honors credit students, limited travel capacity, etc. Any and all performance eligibility decisions will be at the discretion of the director, no exceptions. These performances will be auditioned and will be based solely on recommendation by the director.

    Performance/Concert Policy

    The choral music program, being performance-based in nature, mandates participation in regular school and public performances. We spend weeks and months diligently working toward these public performances.  All in-class goals are directed toward these performances. Think of the performance/concert as the EOG/EOC that covers everything the student has learned; it is the culmination of their musical studies.  Not participating in a performance is akin to not showing up for an exam or an EOG/EOC. If you have a schedule conflict, you must communicate this with the teacher well in advance of the scheduled event. In the event a student does not attend a scheduled performance; the following policy will be fully enforced:
    Attendance and full, active participation is the expectation for all students in the choral music program. Any student absent from any required performance will be assigned an authentic, individual project that will require the amount of time and effort equivalent to that of attending and fully participating in the required performance/concert.  This assignment will be made available, and students will have five (5) instructional days from the instructional date immediately following the performance date to submit the final product.  After this date, no submissions will be accepted, and students will receive a grade accordingly. This policy will be in force for the duration of the academic year; no exceptions will be made.

    PLEASE NOTE: Attendance and active participation at rehearsals and performances are MANDATORY in order to continue in the advanced performing ensemble, as well as to pass the course.

    Performance Calendar

    Multiple performances will be conducted by the choral music program throughout the duration of the academic semester.  **Please refer to the performance calendar page, located on the blog, for a listing of all required dates for the academic semester.  

    Dress/Attire Requirements

    Students enrolled in the Mane Attraction advanced performing ensemble will be required to purchase formal performance attire, as well as t-shirts for more informal performances. These are as follows:

    FEMALES

    Black formal concert dresses, which are required for participation in the Mane Attraction advanced performing ensemble, will be purchased through the choral music department. The total cost of these will be $85.00. Solid black, flat dress shoes are to be worn, as well; NO high heels on stage, as these are a hazard while on the risers.

    MALES
    Black suits packages (including suit coat, pants, collared shirt, and necktie), which are required for participation in the Mane Attraction advanced performing ensemble, will be purchased through the choral music department. The total cost of these will be $115.00. Solid black dress shoes are to be worn, as well. NO black athletic shoes; these must be dress shoes. Please do not ask otherwise.

    Formal Concert Attire Order Forms (Females/Males)

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