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Music at Isabella State School


Classroom music


All students at ISS participate in specialist Music and HPE programs.  In year 5 and 6 students also learn Chinese from a specialist language teacher.  Specialist lessons prepare students for a high school environment where they change teachers for each subject.  It also provides students with experience in a variety of teaching and learning styles. 

Isabella State School boasts a music room with some fantastic equipment both in the classroom and on the stage. There is enough un-tuned and tuned percussion to create whole class ensembles.  A class set of Ukulele’s, keyboards for students to share, quality audio-visual equipment including a ‘Front-Row’ classroom microphone system for hearing impaired students.  Our stage system includes a comprehensive fold-back, as well as a fully programmable 24 LED light system.

Key features of the Orff approach for teaching music are;

Music, dance and language are inter-related and animated through rhythm.

When children discover, invent, improvise and compose, their experience of music is intensified. These creative activities are complementary to those of interpreting and listening to music.

All who take part are encouraged to contribute, not only vocally but also instrumentally.

The Orff approach to music education is many sided; it is concerned with practical music-making, it provides fundamental experiences and it lays the foundation for a comprehensive musical training.

Movement games and activities for body awareness in space, time and flow, lead to movement improvisation and dance forms.

Music and dance have been notated in many different ways in history. Various ways of writing down sounds and music, as well as playing from and interpreting different kinds of sources are being explored.


Instrumental Music


Students wishing to undertake more formal music tuition including higher level theory than is taught in the classroom have excellent opportunities at Isabella State School.

Emma Baker teaches strings for half a day at Isabella.  2016 was the inaugural year of teaching stringed instruments at ISS (violin, viola & cello).  As the ensemble grows we hope Emma can find the time to teach a full day at our school to develop her ensemble and perhaps one day join the concert band to create a full orchestra.

Ruth Pols also teaches brass and woodwind at Hambledon Primary and Bentley Park.  Her Bentley Park band always places competitively in the eisteddfod.  Ruth creates a wonderful ensemble each year using her new students from grade 4 and the students that work with her until year 6.  The highlight of the year is her Band Camp where she gathers all her students from each school and age group to create a large working ensemble.  This is an essential experience for students looking to join high school bands and orchestras.

Rock Band


Each year Mr Owen Sperring, a long serving classroom teacher in the Cairns district, manages and teaches a Rock Band consisting of year 5 and 6 students in conjunction with Mr Jackson.

The band has 2 guitars, bass, drums and 4 singers.  Entry is by audition only.  The band enjoys school performances and a few outside hours gigs each year.  The highlight for these students is the end of year “tour” where we play the same show at 2 or 3 different schools in one day. 

Lunchtime in the music room


Term 1 is spent auditioning year 5 and 6 students who are interested in the rock band and then getting the choir together and ready for the rest of the year.

Term 2 will feature choir getting ready for ANZAC day celebrations. 

Term 3 will be full of preparation for our yearly school performances and the music room will host master-class ensembles for students wishing to hone their skills.

During term 4 the school choir will prepare a Christmas carol and two other songs to perform at the Edmonton Carols by Candlelight event at Ravizza Park.

Later in the year we hope to add an iPad lunchtime activity using the Traktor an app version of the Native Instruments top of the line DJ unit.  We hope students can play their mixed up DJ sets at the school disco.

If you have any questions about music at Isabella State School please do not hesitate to contact Mr Jackson at