Uschool provides extracurricular classroom instruction from beginner to advanced levels (grades 4-12, for 30 weeks of the school year). Practice videos provide support for students and their care-givers between lessons.
- Extra curricular instruction for groups of 15-20 students in weekly classes with audio, online and print support materials
- Students are first offered the program in grade 4, advancing to intermediate and senior levels as they progress
- Classes are designed to run for 30 weeks to align with the full school year
- Instruction covers all basic elements of music: note reading , ear training, ensemble playing, melody, harmony and rhythm
- Our instructors are professional musicians and music educators
Instruction (Online and Audio):
- Practice videos provide additional support students and their care-givers
- Online lessons are presented in brief (5-7) minute segments covering individual concepts for review and practice following each class
- Offered free of charge
- Workshops presented by TDSB and TCDSB for groups of music specialists offer an introduction to the program
- Consultation for school administrators and parent advisories interested in starting a new program
Uschool introduces students to professional performance and studio experiences. Real world performance, recording and media appearances offer our most advanced students opportunities to develop discipline, confidence and professionalism.
- All levels participate in live performances in school concert settings
- Our advanced students make appearances at musical events outside schools including: Luminato, CBC Music Festival, PanAm Games, Music Monday (accompanying Chris Hadfield via satellite link to the International Space Station) and Margaret Atwood’s 75th Birthday Party (Writer’s Trust Gala)
- We self-produce free school tours and lead workshops for future educators (University of Toronto)
- Students gain experience recording in studio settings with professional musicians (Sarah McLachan, Barenaked Ladies) industry producers and technicians
- Advanced students are invited to perform and be interviewed on television and radio
- Appearances have included CTV, CBC and TVO
In the 1960’s, J. Chalmers Doane created and implemented his acclaimed Method in School Boards throughout Canada. The goal is to produce musicians through a classroom instrumental program on par with established classical string, wind and choral training methods.
As they advance through the Program, students are presented with increasingly challenging material. It is a sequential, performance-based method through which students explore elements of music including:
- Fundamental technique (position, posture, tone)
- Ear training and sight reading
- Picking and strumming (melody, harmony and rhythm)
- Arranging (form, tempo and dynamics)
- Singing and self-accompaniment
- Playing (solo and ensemble)
By the end of their 3rd year, students possess a strong foundation in all aspects of music literacy which can be applied to any musical avenue they wish to pursue. They will also have gained confidence by performing in a range of live and recorded settings.
The ukulele is an ideal vehicle for all aspects of music education. Its versatile qualities include:
- Portability and affordability
- The ability to play melody, harmony and rhythm
- The ability to be played while singing
- Adaptability to any style of music from classical and jazz through popular and world music
The possibilities on this small instrument are endless. Perhaps most important, is that learning and playing the ukulele is really, really fun!