Brianne Gidcumb | July 2015

Core Music Anchor Standard 6

Core Music Anchor Standard 6

This month, as part of our year-long series unpacking the Core Arts Standards for General Music, we will close out the performance strand of anchor standards. Standard 4 outlined the objectives for selecting music for performance. Standard 5 addressed the rehearsal and refinement of a piece of music. Today, we’ll discuss the anchor for presenting a musical performance.

Anchor Standard 6: Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.

Artistic Process: Performing (Present)

Enduring Understanding: Musicians judge performance based on criteria that vary across time, place, and cultures.

Essential Question(s): When is a performance judged ready to present? How do context and the manner in which musical work is presented influence audience response?

Big Ideas

Standard 6 asks our music students to really think meaningfully about their musical performance. We want our music students to be able to perform with expression and interpretation, with accuracy, for a purpose, conveying the creator’s intent. We also want our music students to perform appropriately for audience and purpose, demonstrate audience and performance decorum, and demonstrate etiquette appropriate for context, venue, and genre.

 Then and Now

Performance has, and always will be, a vital piece of our students’ music education. We’ve always expected our students to perform with expression and accuracy. We’ve always asked our students to give attention to performance and audience decorum. IWhat makes this new standard so interesting, at least for me, is it’s link to Common Core.

Common Core Connections

This standard is particularly rich in ELA connections. If we look at a piece of music as text, we can apply just about any text-based standard to our students’ musical performance, because students are interpreting with expression and accuracy, conveying creator’s intent, and demonstrating a sensitivity to the appropriate context, venue, and genre of the musical performance. Take a look at just a few ELA standards listed below- if you consider a student’s musical selection a piece of text, what connections can you make? (Hint- I’ve underlined a few pieces that I think translate nicely into student performance!)


Reading 1: Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from a text.

Reading 4: Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.

Reading 5: Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.

Reading 6: Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.

 Process Alignment:

If you’ve been following this series of unpacking the Core Music Standards, you may have seen my Aligning Processes graphic, highlighting where there are interconnected steps in the inquiry, design, and creative processes. Each of these processes includes some kind of presentation component. How can we use this to work towards integrating the arts into other processes in other content areas?

Core Music Anchor Standard, Education Closet

About the Author

Brianne is a former music educator from Chicago and current graduate class instructor with EdCloset’s Learning Studios. She earned her Masters degree in Music Education from VanderCook College of Music and has over a decade of experience in the elementary general music classroom. With her experience in the performing arts, Brianne is dedicated to building connections between the arts and Common Core Standards, 21st century learning skills, inquiry and project-based learning. In addition to her work with EducationCloset, Brianne is a yoga instructor in the Chicagoland area. You can also find Brianne here: