Make a Joyful Noise!
For over ten years, Saint Anne School has had a novel, school-wide instrumental and choral music program through which music instruction is provided to every child, free of charge. In 2010, Saint Anne School’s music program was named a finalist for excellence in music education in the prestigious BRAVO Award competition sponsored by the Music Center of Los Angeles.
Our music program is designed to meet the California State, Common Core and Archdiocese of Los Angeles standards for Music Education.
Every child in TK-8 receives one hour of music instruction per week within the school day. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles allocates 60 minutes per week for music instruction in Catholic schools. Students in our string program receive additional music instruction and practice mentoring in our After School Music Program.
Beginning with Orff-Schulwerk mallet and hand percussion in grades TK-2, the program seeks to provide our students with a firm grasp of fundamental musical concepts, including breathing, phrasing, and timing. The Orff-Schulwerk Approach is one of several developmental approaches our music educators use to teach music, combining music, movement, drama and speech into lessons that are similar to a child’s world of play. The Orff-Schulwerk Approach is now used throughout the world to teach students to enjoy making music individually and in groups, in a natural and comfortable environment. From a teaching perspective, Orff-Schulwerk is the process of breaking down each activity into its simplest form and then presenting those steps one at a time to eventually create a complete performance. Orff-Schulwerk is offered at Saint Anne School by a leading expert in the method, Mary Ann Cummins of Crosroads School for the Arts and Sciences. We currently have an ensemble of over two dozen Orfff-Schulwerk mallet instruments (including xylophones, glockenspiels, and metalaphones) and a large collection of Orff-Schulwerk hand percussion instruments (including hand drums, timpani, triangles, bells, maracas, shakers, rhythm sticks and scrapers).
Strings: Violin, Viola and Cello
Saint Anne School partners with SOL-LA Music Academy to introduce string instruction in violin, viola and cello to students in grades 3 to 8. The program is designed under the El Sistema method to optimize student success by pairing students with high school practice mentors who are accomplished students of those instruments. Our students have use of the school’s violins, violas and cellos free of charge upon signing a use and care agreement.
Students who elect to participate in string instruction commit to our After School Music Program, agreeing to attend after school music practice or mentoring three days per week after school under the guidance of a Music Director and trained student string musicians from Crossroads School for the Arts and Sciences and UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Students meet collectively for orchestra practice on Mondays and on two additional days per week with instrument-specialized mentors.
All grades receive vocal instruction, not only as a classroom learning tool but also geared to regular school celebrations and liturgical participation. In addition, with a substantial background in music theory and performance through the Orff-Schulwerk K-2 program, students in grades 3-8 may elect voice as their instrument and may choose to participate in the school choir as their music elective. Students in choir receive concentrated instruction in choral music from a professional vocalist and music educator.
Student Performance and Enrichment Opportunities
All music students perform regularly individually and in groups in classrooms, and in a year end Spring Concert. Independent schools who are members of Saint Anne School’s Support Council have hosted music performance enrichment opportunities and concerts in support of the school’s music program, including performances by the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra Woodwinds Ensemble, the Symphonic Jazz Orchestra, and Crossroads School Orchestra. Saint Anne School also participates in the Symphonies for Schools program through the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and in this program attend an orchestral concert at Walt Disney Concert Hall.