2020 6th Grade Music Ukulele Class

6th Grade General Music Beginning Ukulele Class Syllabus and Expectations

In this nine-week class you have the opportunity to learn how to play the Ukulele, including simple picking (melody), basic chords (harmony), strumming patterns, and singing.

*2020 Quarter 1 and 2 Amendment:

Every student enrolled in music class quarter 1 WILL NOT share an instrument. The total enrollment allows each student to have their own ukulele to use for the whole quarter. One instrument for each student. After basic care and handling procedures are covered students will be able to pick-up the instrument or will be delivered through bus routes. Details will be given soon.

2020-2021 School Year – Red and Blue Day Plan:   

Both red and blue day “groups/classes” will learn and perform the same music.

 General – Color Day Expectations:

  • Log-in to zoom lesson and Schoology.
  • Complete “bell-ringer” work (note letter practices and/or chord change log)
  • Follow instructions (Practice and play ukulele examples)

General – Virtual Day expectations:

  • Complete “bell-ringer” work (note letter practices and/or chord change log)
  • Log-in to Schoology and practice playing exercises and songs.
  • Submit a recording of you practicing exercises or song

By the end of this class, you will:

  • Be able to read basic notes and rhythms in standard music notation.
  • Know how to play and how to learn basic chord changes.
  • Strum basic patterns and begin more complicated patterns.
  • Play a common chord progression and sing at the same time.

You will learn the following skills that you should apply to any subject or skill:

  • The process of how to learn a skill
  • Effective practice habits
  • How to break down complex skills into manageable components
  • How to engage in the creative process with other people

Course Requirements

Supplies – You are required to have these by the first Friday of the quarter.

  • Your Chromebook – You will use it every day.
  • A 1 Inch 3-ring binder, pocket folder, and pencil.

In Class Policies

  1. Respect self, others, and property. Treat others, as you want to be treated.
  2. Follow directions and be prepared to work.
  • Students should be in their seats, with course materials, ready when the bell rings.
  • Students are responsible for the care of their instrument they are assigned.
    • Student should only touch their own instrument.
    • If an instrument is not in your hand, it should be on its hook on the wall.
    • Purposeful damage to an instrument will result in a discipline action and charge for repairs of that instrument.
    • Any changes in condition or damage should be reported immediately.
  • Students should be respectful of each other and teacher during class. No noodling.
    • Noodling is any noise from an instrument while the teacher is talking.


Your grade in this class is determined by a combination of observations during class, playing tests, and written assessments.

  • Daily Participation (singing and playing) 80% (Informal and formal classroom observation)
  • In class work and assessments 20% (Written test, individual, and group song project)

General Music Standards

  • Demonstrating effective practice habits
  • Observed during class time when individual practice is assigned as well as during group projects.
  • Students should demonstrate the practice habits that are discussed in class.
  • For full credit on this standard, the student is always on task, with minimal redirection, and shows that they are performing the assigned task.
  • Demonstrating music literacy
  • Observed and assessed during class time and with written assessments.
  • Students should demonstrate that they can identify the parts and functions of the instrument.
  • Student should demonstrate that they can identify and play with the proper technique.
    • The notes in the treble clef from middle C to the C above.
    • The notes of the C major scale on the ukulele fret board.
    • Whole, Half, Quarter, and Eighth note rhythms.
    • Basic chord diagrams for the instrument.
  • Performs music independently and with others
  • Observed and assessed during class time and group projects.
  • Student should demonstrate that they can:
    • Play a basic melody on the instrument.
    • Play the assigned chord progression with a simple strum pattern.
    • Keep a steady beat, without losing a beat when changing chords.
    • Sing at the same time that they play chords.
    • Work with a group and do the above.
    • Work with a group to find ways to create changes to a song.

Class Unit Outline and Project

Unit 1: The Basics

  • Sitting posture, ukulele parts, string names and numbers, and instrument care.
  • Classroom procedures, log instrument condition and learn how to tune the strings.
  • Practice concept 1: Don’t practice until you get it right, practice until you can’t get it wrong.
  • Tests on ukulele parts, string names, note letters, etc.

Unit 2: Pitches in first Position

  • Notes of the C major scale and the location on the instrument.
  • Reading concepts: Looking ahead in music, watching for patterns and changes, and rhythm reading.
  • Practice concept 2: Practice fundamental skills.
  • Practice concept 3: Work on skills that are difficult for you, more than those that are easy.
  • Playing test: C major scale while naming pitches out loud.
  • Written test on note identification on staff and fret board.
  • Extensions: Improvising using C major scale with the chord patterns, and finger picking each string with different fingers.

Unit 3: Pitches in first position

  • Basic strum technique
  • Chords: C F, G7, G, Am
  • Learning chord changes
  • Reading concepts: Chord diagrams, reading Strum notation (Down and up strokes)
  • Practice concept 4: Isolate and master individual skills before combining them
  • Practice concept 5: Build speed gradually to avoid introducing mistakes
  • Practice concept 6: Track progress in order to maintain resiliency and analyze practice habits
  • Playing test: Assigned chord changes on quarter notes
  • Written test on chord diagram identification, strumming concepts, and tracking of chord change log
  • Extensions: eight notes strumming

Unit 4: Ensemble Playing

  • Playing with a partner
  • Playing with an ensemble

Final Project: Four Chord Song

  • Students work in small groups (no more than 3) to create a “Cover Song” – ALL students sing while using the basic chord progression, then perform it for class.
  • Videos will be taken of the performances and posted on Google Drive and Schoology for parents to view.

Questions or concerns please call or email: 630-301-5794 email: jglogowski@sd129.org