GCA is excited to offer MORE music opportunities for 4th-8th grade students. We have opened up an Advanced level band for 6th-8th grade students who have played an instrument for more than 1 year and an Into level band where students grade 4-8 can select any band instrument and learn to play. Our band ensembles meet daily for 45 mins and utilize the Essential Elements and supplemental curriculum to teach students how to play their instrument as well as rhythm, notation reading, and musical vocabulary. We focus heavily on being an ensemble and supporting each other through our musical journey. Band students will perform in two school ministry performance: The Holiday Performance on December 14th and the Spring Music Concert in May. Students will also have the opportunity to participate in musical outreach in the community through visits to nursing homes or other special venues and to lead school spirit at school sporting events as a Pep Band throughout the year.
String Ensemble this year is a pull-out program where students get small group instruction six times a month. The strings program also utilizes the Essential Elements and supplemental curriculums to teach the basics of their instruments and music reading skills. We are blessed with a wonderful volunteer/mentor, Mrs. Susan Sweeney, who is a retired Charles County Band/Strings teacher who comes monthly to specialize with student musicians and give personal direction and instruction.
Grace is extremely blessed to have an incredible enrollment in these programs. In fact 49% of all 4th-8th students are involved in at least one musical ensemble at GCA. A few select students are even members of multiple ensembles.
Project Lead the Way | STEM Program
We are pleased to announce that Grace is able to bring back the STEM program Project Lead the Way (PLTW)! The program was first brought to Grace in our secondary and 5th grade classrooms in 2019. PLTW was an elective course for the secondary students and for the 5th grade students, PLTW took the place of their science lessons. With staffing changes post-COVID, we knew that our technology and STEM department was lacking. Through much prayer and planning the previous two school years, God has blessed Grace with funds and an educator qualified to teach PLTW! All staff who teaches a PLTW course must complete the hours of training and become certified. Not only will PLTW be available once again to middle school and 5th grade, but the rest of the school as well! These courses will still be an elective course for middle school but will be in the form of a specials class for Preschool and Elementary. Students will learn age appropriate coding, computer skills, and hands-on science and engineering lessons.
Please join us in welcoming Mr. Sedric Reeves, our new STEM/Technology teacher!
(Photos from prior PLTW/STEM classes.)