• Music Appreciation Course Syllabus

    Teacher: Mr. Ostrovsky

    Contact Information: mostrovs@houstonisd.

    Music Appreciation is open to all students. The purpose of this course is to increase students' musical awareness and give students the tools to actively listen to, discuss, and critique various styles of music. The first portion of the course will focus on learning the basic elements of music: Melody, Rhythm, Harmony, Form, Texture, Tempo, and Dynamics. Using appropriate music vocabulary, students will study and discuss a variety of musical genres, including Classical, Jazz, Rock, Musicals, and World Music.

    Learning Targets per Unit: Defined below for clarity are the Unit Titles, Big Ideas of every Unit taught during this course, and the Essential Questions to be answered to better understand the Big Ideas. A student’s ability to grasp and answer the Essential Questions will define whether or not he or she adequately learns and can apply the skills found in Big Ideas. This will ultimately define whether or not a student scores well on assessments given for this course.

    o Unit I: What is Music?

    § Big Idea #1: Basic Foundations of Music

    · Essential Question: What are the basic foundations of music?

    § Big Idea #2: Music and people

    · Essential Question: How does music affect our lives?

    · Essential Question: How is music used as national identity?


    o Unit II: Basic Music Notation

    § Big Idea #1: Basic Staff Reading

    · Essential Question: What notes are used in music?

    · Essential Question: What terms are used in staff reading?

    · Essential Question: What expression terms are used in music?


    o Unit III: Instruments and Ensembles

    § Big Idea #1: Instruments

    · Essential Question: What are the different instrument families?

    · Essential Question: What instruments are in each family?

    § Big Idea #2: Ensembles

    · Essential Question: What are the different types of ensembles?

    · Essential Question: What instruments families are typical in each ensemble?


    o Unit IV: Western Classical Music

    § Big Idea #1: Different Eras

    · Essential Question: What are the names of the main eras of classical music?

    · Essential Question: What are they style differences between the eras?

    · Essential Question: What composers are associated with each era?



    o Unit V: American Music

    § Big Idea #1: Different Genres

    · Essential Question: What are the different American styles?

    · Essential Question: What are some of the major influences of each style?


    o Unit VI: Film Music

    § Big Idea #1: History of Film Music  

    · Essential Question: What is the brief history of film music?

    · Essential Question: How has it evolved over time?

    § Big Idea #2: Movie Enhancement

    · Essential Question: How does music enhance the plot of the movie?

    · Essential Question: How are recurring themes used in movies?



    Major Assessments:  50% (Essays, Project, Exams)

    Minor Assessments (Including: Quizzes, Classwork, Homework): 40%

    Academic Skills 10%