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At NGFS, all of our students have an opportunity to engage deeply in the study of music. Our music program welcomes all levels and interests, and seeks to nurture an appreciation for a broad spectrum of musical options.

Music begins as part of the core classes with our youngest students in preschool. Our comprehensive curriculum examines the foundations of music, including rhythm, melody, harmony, timbre, and structure. Students then have the opportunity for musical interaction through singing, playing, composing, and listening – all to help develop musical ability and enjoyment. Selections from familiar American genres as well as other cultures are shared to create a global music experience.

Beginning in 3rd grade, we offer the option of a Suzuki violin class. Our Middle and Upper School offer a comprehensive guitar program, and students can participate in a music ensemble with an opportunity to perform a variety of musical styles and genres.

K-6 Program:

  • Kindergarten students explore pitch, movement, and tempo using percussion instruments. They learn to read rhythms and the Treble Clef. In first and second grade, pitched instruments are introduced. In fifth grade, students begin applying their notation skills to the recorder and violin. Here they continue to refine pitch, rhythm, and note reading.
  • Music history is taught at all levels, students explore world music, classical music, Jazz, and the history of Rock-n-Roll.
  • Periodic performances give students the chance to prepare, rehearse, manage their expectations, and be responsible to others. Some students relish these opportunities, for others, knowing they can successfully perform in front of an audience, even for a short time, is an important developmental step.

7-12 Program:

  • The Upper School music curriculum includes both academic and performance-based music courses. Our academic classes explore music’s relevance to contemporary society, how music affects and reflects culture, as well as foundations in music such as theory and history.
  • Performance classes currently include Studio Guitar I & II for Middle and Upper School, and Instrumental Ensemble. Students study basic elements of ensemble playing, improvisation, theory, and technique. Learn more about the Guitar program (link to page).
  • The music department has a place for all levels and interests, and seeks to nurture love and appreciation for all aspects of music. We believe that music is an outlet for personal expression, as well as a tool for affecting positive change.