Core Curriculum

Each student in the CSP program participates in a curriculum that includes a weekly private lesson as well as regularly scheduled classes through the Saturday Ensemble and Music Theory Program (SEMTP). The SEMTP trains students to read and understand music, play different styles of music, develop ensemble skills, and solidify the repertoire and technique they are learning in private lessons. Every student participates in a Suzuki Repertoire Class and Music Theory Class. There are additional classes for intermediate and advanced students depending on their level. You can read more information about each element of the curriculum below:

Private Lesson- Each child has a lesson each week either in Mt. Washington at the Phelan Studio or in Clifton at the St. Monica- St. George Parish Center. Lessons are either 30, 45, or 60 minutes in length depending on the age, maturity, and playing ability of the student. Private lessons are held for 32 weeks of the school year and are available over the summer as well. 

Suzuki Repertoire Class- This class focuses on technique building using repertoire from Suzuki Volumes 1-10. The class is 30-40 minutes depending on the level of the student.

Music Theory Class- Students are assigned to a 30-40 minute music theory class based on their age. This class covers note reading and symbol identification, rhythm, and ear training. High school students are also introduced to advanced music theory concepts such as modes and the circle of fifths. Class activities are based on the Music Mind Games method by Michiko Yurko.

Additional Classes for Levels II and III:

Repertoire Ensemble- This is a sight-reading class for intermediate students in Levels II and III. In addition to the standard Suzuki repertoire, this group also performs Christmas carols, classical pieces, fiddle music, and jazz pieces. Students develop skills in ensemble etiquette, preparedness, and personal accountability that prepare them for the TEEN STRINGS program.

Sight Reading Class- This class is for beginning readers in Levels II and III. Students learn note-reading through a method based on Joanne Martin’s book, I Can Read Music.

Additional Classes for TEEN STRINGS (Level IV):

TEEN STRINGS Ensemble- Students in this ensemble serve as role models for the program. Positivity, time management, and responsibility are highly valued in this group. Students develop leadership skills by leading pieces, assisting in other classes, and setting up rehearsal spaces. This group plays classical repertoire as well as other genres such as Latin music, Appalachian fiddle music, and movie music.

Chamber Literature class- For this class, students in TEEN STRINGS are broken up into smaller groups, to play chamber music repertoire. Students learn chamber music skills and are responsible for personal accountability with only one person on each part.