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Teaching staff

Music: Mrs Dorene Carter, Ms Bethany Rowe

Percussion: Ms Helen Lowe

Woodwind: Ms Helen Lowe

Brass: Mrs Robyn Forshaw

Strings: Ms Penny Williams


For most people, music is an integral part of life. We believe all students can derive considerable fulfilment and enjoyment from music education – not only those who show a particular talent. The skills and concepts students acquire, as a result of their music education should be of benefit to them not only in their schooling but also in the years beyond formal education.

Sunnybank Hills has one of the best programs in the state. We have music lessons for one hour a week in years 1 to 4 and for half an hour in years 5 to 6. This classroom music program aims to equip each child with skills and understandings which will help him/her to appreciate music and to participate in music making. Children are involved in a wide variety of activities from singing games and the playing of instruments to composing and performing. Students in years 4 to 6 are expected to have recorders and books at every lesson. This work is continued and supplemented by the classroom teachers.

Choral program

Currently we have four choir groups:

  • Senior choir (years 5 and 6)
  • Junior choir (years 3 and 4)
  • Boys choir (years 4 to 6)
  • Junior choral (years 1 and 2)

Children are selected and recruited by the music teachers Mrs carter and Mrs rowe. they are required to attend rehearsals in their own time. Each year each group performs for school functions and the intermediate and senior group also enter a number of competitions. Uniforms are required for all but the junior choral.

Instrumental program recruitment

Recruitment for the strings program occurs in year 2 for year 3, and for other instruments in year 4 or year 5.

Students are assessed according to:

  • A standard musicality test
  • General class attitude and performance
  • Music class achievement

Instruments offered in year 3 are: violin, viola, cello and double bass. Our loan instruments for the strings program are double bass and 2 cellos. Parents provide all other instruments.

Instruments offered in year 5 include: French horn, flute, clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, trumpet, trombone, tuba and percussion.

We are able to loan some instruments in the first year. The larger expensive instruments (French horn, tuba, tenor saxophone) are on loan for the duration of the student’s learning. These expensive instruments are lent for the duration of the child’s primary education. In all other cases children are expected to purchase or hire their own instrument after one year.

Information evening

During fourth term all music staff invite parents of children who are entering our program to an information evening. At this evening we outline the expectations, the running of the program and the costs of the program.

Yearly contribution

Each year parents are asked to contribute the following money to assist with the expense of running the program. Children who have school instruments on loan are asked to contribute $100 and those with their own are asked to contribute $50. This money covers the purchase of music, entry to competitions as well as instrumental repairs. In addition the P&C also contributes approximately $5000 towards the purchase of additional instruments or resources.

Band uniform

As well as the choir the band and strings students wear a uniform. These uniforms are available at the uniform shop.


Students attend one lesson per week. These lessons are organised on a rotational basis to assist the children in not missing out on the same class lessons each week. Rehearsals are usually before school and are compulsory for those in the program.


Students in this program are expected to practice 5x30 minutes every week. This is vital to a successful experience in learning a given instrument. Practice is monitored by teachers with a practice sheet which we ask parents to monitor and sign. As students are taught in a group of approximately 5 it is important that they work together as a team and are up-to-date with the practise set by the teacher.


It is compulsory for each student to attend timetabled lessons, instrumental group rehearsals and all performances. Students who are absent must present a note from their parents as soon as possible after that time. If a student continues to be absent without explanation, parents will be contacted and that student may be withdrawn from the program.