• Higley- United in 20 Years of Excellence

    Higley High School

    Choir Syllabus

    Mr. Robert Decoste

    Mr. Steven Chetham

    Office Hours by Appointment Only

    Robert.Decoste@HUSD.org - (480) 279-7421

    Steven.Chetham@HUSD.org – (480) 279-7393

    Higley- Renewed Excellence


    Course objectives

    This is a vocal music course for high school students who have a desire to learn, sing and perform music. The goal of this course is to teach students the fundamentals of music, help create independence while learning and singing music and to become confident singers and develop an appreciation for music.


    Some objectives for this year include:

    Learning the fundamentals of music.

    This includes but is not limited to The Staff, Clefs and Lines, Solfege, Rhythm Names and Syllables, Rest Names, Note Names and Syllables, Accidentals / Chromatic Solfege, Time Signatures, Key Signatures, Dynamics, Articulations

    Demonstrating proper breath support

    Demonstrating proper tone production

    Demonstrating knowledge of musical terms

    Mastering the beginning levels of sight reading

    Understanding and demonstrating blend and balance within a choir


    ** I reserve the right to change, add or remove anything in the syllabus **

    Classroom expectations and materials

    Students are expected to have their cameras on during class time and attempt to be in a distraction free zone. When working on music and singing, I need to be able to see your mouth.

                  If you need to step away from your computer for a moment, please do.

    Students will need access to zoom (preferably on a computer)

    Students will need a set of headphones if possible

    Students will need a separate recording device (cell phones work great) to submit assignments.


    Grading Policies

    Grades will be determined each semester through the following criteria:

    Assessment (80%)

    Due to COVID-19, this year will have a different approach from previous years regarding assessment. There will be more assigned assignments and class work while concerts are not accessible to us. Because of this, all work for the course will be weighed in one category called assessment.

    Final Exam (20%)

    The final exam will be a cumulative report from the semesters work. There will be ample opportunity to prepare for the report.


    Grading Scale:

    90% - 100% = A

    80% - 89% = B

    70% - 79% = C

    60% - 69% = D

    59% or less = F



    If a student is struggling or a parent is concerned about a grade, please email or call me to discuss the situation. I am more than happy to help resolve and issues and my top priority is to help students learn and be successful.


    ** I reserve the right to change, add or remove anything in the syllabus **


    Choir Club

    Being enrolled in the choral program automatically enters you into the choir club. Meetings will be held during class time, occasionally before or after school and there will be opportunities for students to be elected into officer positions. Club Dues will be mandatory for all members and is set at $20 per student. This will be paid during the first month of school.


    Concert Dates

    Due to complications with COVID-19, all performances are POSTPONED until a time that is deemed safe and secure.

    Fall Concert – TBD

    Winter Concert – TBD

    Feeder Concert - TBD

    Spring Concert – TBD

    Spring Pop Show – TDB

    There may be opportunities for additional opportunities for performances and these will be discussed as they present themselves. Ample time will be given to adjust calendars and schedules



    Fundraising will be an important for our choir program here at Higley High School. Fundraising opportunities will allow students to earn credit towards tour prices, classroom accessories and even classroom parties. Currently, there are no fundraising opportunities that I can share with you but there are some in the works. It’s important to know that fundraising will help our program grow and allow us to purchase new and important materials for our classroom. More information to come!

    ** I reserve the right to change, add or remove anything in the syllabus **


    Concert Attire

    The choral program requires formal attire be worn for most of our concerts. The Higley Choral Program will provide Tuxedos and Gowns for all members and therefore, parents will not be responsible to providing attire beyond socks and shoes.  A small club fee will be issued to all members each year to help clean, maintain and restore our Tuxedos and Gowns.



    Like all of your classes, attendance is mandatory. In the real world, if a musician is late or absent, they are fired. In the classroom, points will be deducted from your Performance Practice grade. This is to help clarify what it is to be a true musician. Being tardy will deduct point for a given day but with good performance, points can be earned back. Being absent will deduct points for the day but those points cannot be refunded.

    Additionally, as per school policy, the following policy will be enforced regarding tardiness:

    1st tardy is a reminder

    2nd tardy is a phone call home

    3rd tardy is ASD (after school detention) with the classroom teacher

    4th tardy is an office referral









    ** I reserve the right to change, add or remove anything in the syllabus