SUSD Music Program Overview

  • Music education for students begins in elementary school starting from TK/Kindergarten through 8th grade.

Elementary School Music Programs

  • Grades TK-5 General Music

    Music in elementary school focuses on listening, singing, following rhythms and beat, and exposure to different musical styles including folk, traditional, jazz and musical theater. Throughout the school year, students have the opportunity to play many musical instruments including the xylophone, the metallophone, the glockenspiel, unpitched percussion, and recorders (grades 4-5). Through this process of singing, playing and listening, students are introduced to the elements of music theory, all while gaining an appreciation for music.

    New for 2019-2020 is the addition of a digital music component to our existing TK - 5th grade program. Students will now be more engaged as they view interactive musical activities. These include listening maps and notated music with a bouncing beat to help students follow along more easily, detailed explanations of movement activities, listening selections, and background and historical information for every lesson.

    5th Grade Band

    Students in 5th grade have the option of either continuing on a general music track or selecting one of “The Big Four” band instruments where they can continue onto the middle school band track. Students are carefully guided to select either flute, clarinet, trumpet or baritone where they have practice one day a week during the regular school day. In addition, all band students from the three elementary sites are encouraged to attend the optional extra practice at Redwood middle school on Wednesday afternoons. 

    4th and 5th Grade Strings

    Elementary School String Orchestras Program (violin, viola, cello and string bass) is available after school for SUSD students in grades 4-5. Students may take part in Beginning Strings (no prior experience), Allegro Strings (advanced), and Scherzo (audition only). Scherzo students are part of Allegro Strings but may also participate in practices/concerts with the middle school Adagio ensemble.

Grade 1 Music Class

Middle School Music Programs

  • The Redwood Middle School Music Department oversees instrumental music from grades 4-8, as well as the choir and color guard/dance program for grades 6-8. In addition to classes, groups perform at the district concerts during the school year and at other community events.

    For a full description of the middle school program, visit

    Band for Grades 6-8

    The band program includes woodwinds, brass, and percussion. Some classes take place before school during A Period, others during the school day. Students perform at various events throughout the school year including district concerts, parades, and community events.

    • Griffin Band, grades 6-7, year 2 level or equivalent proficiency
    • Concert and Symphonic Bands, grades 7-8 (audition needed for grade 6)
    • Marching Band, grades 7-8
    • Jazz Band, grades 7-8
    • Woodwind and Brass Sectionals, grades 6-8
    • Percussion Fundamentals, grades 6-8
    • Percussion Ensemble, grades 7-8 (audition needed for grade 6)

    Choir for Grades 6-8

    RMS Choir welcomes any student who loves to sing! Choir performs various times throughout the semester at concerts as well as in competition. Classes meet after school.

    Color Guard and Dance for Grades 6-8

    Redwood’s flag and dance team is open to all students, male and female, beginner to advanced. The Color Guard utilizes dance, shields, and flags in a visual interpretation of the music. Focus is on learning basic movements and choreography. Classes meet during A period. The Color Guard performs at parades and shows throughout the school year.

    Grade 6 Music Exploratory

    All Redwood students in the 6th grade are given a year of 6-week exploratory blocks in which they are introduced to small segments of possible electives that they may choose in 7th and 8th grades. Music exploratory includes topics on basic music notation and reading, percussion rudiments, music in film, color guard basics, music as a communicative and artistic medium and more.

    Orchestra and Strings for Grades 6-8

    The Redwood Strings program encompasses violin, viola, cello, and string bass. Students audition to be placed in one of four string groups. Classes meet during the day. Students continuously work on refining playing techniques, enhance musicianship, and play in a group with their peers. All string groups participate in various events and performs at district concerts.

    • Adagio, Presto, and Vivace Strings, grades 6-8, by audition only
    • Chamber Strings, grades 7-8, audition only

    Visit for detailed descriptions of the programs listed above.

RMS Marching Band
Choir performance