Rhodes School District 84.5

Vocal Music

The students at Rhodes School who are currently in grades 3 through 8 are eligible to participate in one of three choral groups. The students perform challenging music at several concerts and competitions throughout the school year. Students are assessed through class participation, show of responsibility, musical progress throughout the year and level of concentration during rehearsals and performances.

Please join us for a visit to some of our program features by clicking on your choices below:

For More Information or you have any questions and need additional information about the Rhodes vocal music program, please feel free to call Mr. Hommowun at (708) 453-6813.

You may also write to:
Mr. Hommowun, Vocal Music Director
c/o Rhodes School
8931 W. Fullerton Ave.
River Grove, Il. 60171

Contact Mr. Hommowun via Email


The Rhodes Senior Chorus is made up of 6th, 7th , and 8th grade students. They are selected by an audition process at the beginning of each school year. The Senior Chorus meets both before school and during 7th period throughout the week where we work on challenging music in three-part harmonies.

This group performs at the Winter and Spring concerts, Viva la Musica, and the 8th Grade Graduation at Rhodes School. This group also participates in contests outside of school including the Illinois Grade School Music Association (IGSMA) District Contest in March, the State Contest in April (if we qualify), and the "Music in the Parks" Festival competition where we have won many outstanding awards.


The Rhodes Fifth Notes is the 5th grade chorus at Rhodes School made up of any 5th grade student who enjoys singing. This is a very fun group. This group has the fewest students of any of the choruses. This year 5th notes will sing in concert with both Jr. Chorus and Sr. Chorus. This allows the students to focus on individual vocal skills necessary to be a quality solo singer and harmony skills to be able to sing in Senior Chorus in 6th grade. The Fifth Notes perform at both the Winter and Spring concerts.


The Rhodes Junior Chorus consists of any student in grades 3 and 4 who enjoy singing. This is a non-auditioned group of students who perform music in unison to familiarize them with the experience of singing in a chorus. They rehearse after school two days a week where they learn how to stand and breathe correctly as well as important choral techniques (such as singing in solfege and following a director). This group performs at the Winter and Spring concerts.


As we see most of the classes only once a week, sequencing becomes very important. It is crucial that students are able to follow the logical flow of information from week to week.

We begin every class the same to provide continuity: in all grades, we begin each class with the same song "Hello" and a review of previously learned materials. We also talk about our monthly focus. The monthly focus varies from grade level to grade level.

There is an overall sequence between grade levels as well as a sequence for each individual grade.

Grade Level Summary


Focus largely on steady beat and using a "singing" voice. We also incorporate basic rhythms to prepare for future grades. Kindergarten also focuses on improvisation and exploring movement within music.

First Grade

Focus on steady beat (micro and macro beat), using singing voices, the difference between high/low, soft/loud, fast/slow, and reviewing rhythms. This is done through echo songs, call and response songs, circle games, and solos.

Second Grade

Find a more complicated steady beat in compound meter instead of solely simple meter. Light voice (singing made up "songs" to encourage creativity and confidence). Writing and performing own simple rhythms. Identifying rhythms aurally in addition to visually. Also done through echo songs, call and response songs, circle games, and solos.

Third Grade

More complicated rhythms (writing, reading, and performing). Introduce music letter names on treble staff (play on recorder). Introduction of cultural music (i.e. African American spirituals, eastern folk songs, etc.).

Fourth Grade

Reinforce complicated rhythms. Review letter names on treble staff (and learn more) (create "words" on treble staff). Explore more cultural music and identify different characteristics (timbre, scales, rhythmic patterns, etc.). Begin a general survey of music history to prepare for future years.

Fifth Grade

Complicated rhythms (introduce syncopation, write rhythmic compositions). General music theory reinforced (i.e. tempo, dynamics, symbols). Music history general survey (A handful of song and composer selections from Baroque, Classical, Romantic era; identify songs by characteristics of each era). Cultural characteristics (specifically pentatonic scales, writing and performing a pentatonic song). Found Sound (understanding basics of composition and creating a sound composition).

Sixth Grade

Review music theory (focus on important terms and canon and ostinato). In depth music history (Romantic, Impressionist and Modern) including world events and musical characteristics from each period. Learn about music's influence on Movies and TV. Students will complete research projects focused on careers in music and music history through the decades.

Seventh Grade

Research and exploration based class focusing on music's place in the modern world. Students will do project based learning units focusing on creating a soundtrack to a short movie, researching careers in music, and creating their own digital musical productions using various online Digital Audio Workplaces (DAW).

Teachers can be contacted via DOJO and email. Please visit our Staff Connection to contact your child's teacher.

Vocal Music Curriculum Maps