Orff Schulwerk Level I


Orff Schulwerk Certification
Level I


Level I is largely experiential – a time in which the class as an ensemble comes together exploring, developing skills, creating, and analyzing music and movement activities.   Elemental Music is approached through hands-on experiences, lively discussions and solid musical models which help develop both skills and concepts, and provide tools for creating your own active musicmaking curriculum.  Prompt, daily attendance is expected.  Please do not schedule appointments or other commitments during this time – successful completion is based on required contact hours.  As an ensemble experience, your fellow participants depend on you.

Participants will have the opportunity to present a final sharing performance in one of Mason’s professional theater spaces, demonstrating the connection of skills and techniques gained during the program. Friends and family are welcome.

Dates:  July 17 – 28, 2017  (2 weeks)
Times:  8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Mon-Fri)
Instructors: Donna Fleetwood, Joyce Stephansky and Shoshanah Drake, w/ Victoria Redfearn Cave and John Crandall
Location:  Mason Fairfax Campus, Performing Arts Building
On-Campus Housing:  See Details 
Parking: $25 per week  Purchase A Pass   


Tuition NON-CREDIT:  $898

OR    Register by Fax/Mail



Tuition FOR-CREDIT:  $1,650 in-state or $1,950 out-of-state


Register by Fax/Mail only (no online registration)



Sample daily schedule:
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  • An opening warm-up: songs, canons or movement at 8:30 sharp!
  • Two class periods in basic pedagogy and elemental music theory – 3.5 hours total.
  • A recorder class including playing techniques, literature and pedagogy as well as music and movement applications. 1 hour
  • A class in movement including development of vocabulary and skills, pedagogy as well as musical applications – 75 minutes.
  • In addition, there will be four special topic sessions throughout the course in which all three Levels come together for musical and movement experiences.
  • And… of course breaks for travel, refreshment and lunch!

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Assignments will be given on most days and will be based on activities experienced during the classes.  They will consist of writing/composing rhythmic or melodic examples that could typically be used with your students. In addition, there will be reading assignments geared to a better understanding of Orff Schulwerk ideas, models and concepts.  You will be expected to work on recorder skills and develop pedagogical ideas in both recorder and movement classes.  Class Notes: Participants will receive class notes for each area of study – both in hard copy and/or electronically as the course progresses.

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Important materials to have for assignments and note taking:  standard music notation paper, pencils/pens, colored highlighters, tape, straight-edge, post-its, a 3-ring binder for notes.  You may want to use music writing computer software for your assignments such as Sibelius or Finale.  You may also want to have an individual flash drive for notes and materials generated in class.

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You have received (or will receive) a letter listing both recommended and required books and materials as well as other resources to have on hand.  Required and recommended materials will be available at the West Music store, which will be conveniently located near our classes. You may be able to find some of these books online ahead of time.


  • Music for Children, Volume I, Margaret Murray edition; Schott Elementaria, Gunild Keetman; Schott
  • The Sweet Pipes Recorder Book: A Method for Adults and Older Beginners, Book I, Soprano
  • Recorders: Level 1 – Students will be asked to bring or purchase a quality Yamaha soprano recorder – YRS30 2B, available in the West bookstore for around $16

Recommended: (These selections are good for your professional bookshelf and are handy as you progress through the Levels.)

  • Erstes Spiel am Xylophon, Keetman; Schott
  • Rhythmische Übung, Keetman; Schott
  • Spilebuch für Xylophon I, Keetman; Schott
  • Play, Sing and Dance, Doug Goodkin; Schott
  • Creative Dance for All Ages, Anne Green Gilber – strongly recommended
  • Orff Schulwerk – American Edition, Volumes 1 and/or 2; Schott

2017 Orff Levels Book Prices from West Music

Other Suggestions:
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  • Hand drums – due to shortages, we are asking that those who have access to hand drums to please bring them.  Please put your name or your school’s name on any drums that you bring.
  • A barred instrument from your school is handy to have at home to try out your orchestration assignments.
  • Nursery rhymes, children’s poetry, picture and story books will be helpful.
  • You may want to use/bring music writing computer software for your assignments such as Sibelius or Finale.

Credit and Non-Credit Enrollment: Assignments and Requirements
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Whether you are taking the course for credit or non-credit, you are eligible for Certification in Orff Schulwerk after the successful completion of Level III.  Certification is awarded by George Mason University and the American Orff Schulwerk Association.  The Certification Program is designed as an ensemble experience therefore active and full participation is expected from everyone so that the pedagogy can be fully experienced.  Those who have enrolled in the class for credit have opted to take a graduate level course and will be asked to complete some extra assignments which will fulfill those requirements as well as help prepare them for final exams if they are pursuing the Masters in Music program with an emphasis in Orff Schulwerk.  Those assignments may consist of additional written responses to reading assignments and/or separate completion of curriculum design.


Download Orff Requirements & Competencies


Summer Program Refund Policy
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If a registrant has to cancel participation in this program, a tuition refund minus a $50 cancelation fee will be given provided that notice is received by the Potomac Arts Academy  no later than 2 weeks before the program start date.  No refunds will be granted after this date without valid medical documentation.   *IMPORTANT: No refunds for on-campus housing will be given after April 1, 2017.