Introduction to Music Theory and Appreciation

Course Description


Full-year course. This course combines the introductory study of music theory with an overview of Western music history. It focuses on the building blocks of melody, harmony, rhythm, and notation to help students understand the mechanics of how music works. In addition, it explores the history and development of Western music from Ancient times to the present, placing composers and famous works in their historical context. Students will learn the framework necessary to read, comprehend, and analyze music, and they will listen to and learn to recognize well-known and influential works within the Western music tradition. Students will also practice using musical notation and compose simple melodies.

Please look at both Introduction and Intermediate Music Theory if you are not sure which level is appropriate for your student. Usually, if a student can already read music fairly comfortably (at least treble clef), Intermediate Music Theory should be appropriate.

Example Syllabus (Download the PDF)

Required Text:

  • The instructor will provide all reading materials.

Class meets once per week for 50-55 minutes.

Class cap: 15 students.

Designed for grades 6-9.

Students in grades 9-12 may be awarded 1 Fine Arts credit upon completion of this course.