Music is offered in various forms as one of the many Performing Arts available in the ‘Iolani School curriculum.
Before moving on to the extensive Upper School music options, Lower School students are exposed to several forms of musical participation. This includes individual as well as group participation for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. Classes provide students with exposure to varied experiences, knowledge and skills. The Orff-Schulwerk pedagogy, which bases learning on the use of song, movement, language, instruments and improvisation, is used extensively although not exclusively.
Lower School students enjoy body percussion and movement activities, listen to and read music, and play instruments (small percussion, recorders, ukulele, bar instruments) in a large room without desks or chairs. Learning hymns for chapel and preparing for grade level programs are also integral parts of the students' activities.
The general music classes in the Lower School transition smoothly to the Upper School, where the offerings include courses in concert and marching bands, stage bands, a large chorus and a select group, many string and symphonic orchestras, Suzuki classes, an Orff ensemble, music theory and chamber ensembles. The music groups have performed extensively throughout the United States and other countries.