The West Hartford Public Schools' Music Department will provide all students with a comprehensive, standards-based music education. The study of music fosters artistic development, critical thinking, intellectual curiosity, and the pursuit of life-long learning. Through performing and responding to music, all students develop individual skills, realize a sense of belonging, and establish connections to the community.
The music program of the West Hartford Public schools provides a rich and rigorous experience for students from Kindergarten through 12th grade. Basic skills are introduced at the 11 elementary schools, while at the 3 middle schools there is a larger emphasis on improving ensemble skills. The high schools feature age and ability leveled ensembles that perform throughout the year.
All students take general music classes from Kindergarten through 8th grade, where they learn to sing, read and write music. They also develop dancing skills, rhythmic skills, and study some music history.
Starting in 4th grade, students are able to begin taking instrument lessons and perform in the Band, Orchestra, and Choir. These ensembles continue in the middle schools, where there are also select ensembles which highlight the most hard-working and gifted students. Each high school offers over a dozen courses where students hone their selected performance skills, vocally and instrumentally.
The Inter-Elementary Music Festival is a program open by audition to 5th and 4th graders in the music ensembles at the elementary schools. Students who are accepted into the Band, Orchestra, and Choir gather weekly for after-school rehearsals. The program culminates in a tour day within the district and a performance on the stage of The Bushnell in Hartford.
Music Courses in High School
Throughout the Performing Arts classes, students are brought together to work in ensembles where they hone their individual and collaborative skills. Students deepen their artistic development and expressive sensitivity through the carefully guided study of core repertoire and performance preparation.
The West Hartford Public Schools' Music Department provides all students with a comprehensive, standards-based music education. The study of music fosters artistic development, critical thinking, intellectual curiosity, and the pursuit of life-long learning. Through performing and responding to music, all students develop individual skills, realize a sense of belonging, and establish connections to the community. The Music department offers courses that provide a variety of experiences for students of all abilities and musical backgrounds. These courses are designed for students who wish to pursue music as an avocation as well as those planning a career in music. Some of the courses listed below are open to all students; others require a special audition for membership. Most music classes meet daily.
Students enrolling in performance groups accept the obligation to participate in all scheduled concerts and rehearsals. Students may only be excused with the instructor's approval.
In addition to the courses listed below as Honors Level, Contract Credit is available for a limited number of juniors and seniors in conjunction with one music class. Acceptance to this Contract Honors Program is based on a student audition and portfolio, both of which will be reviewed by the music faculty.