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This page is dedicated as a student resource for the IUSD Elementary Honor Chorus 2020. You will find all the requirements, rules, dates, and all other important detail regarding IUSD Elementary Honor Chorus 2020 right on this page. You will be able to listen to complete songs and part tracks here.


With the announcement of the extension of the Distance Learning until May 1st, we regret to inform you that the Honors Concert and all rehearsals are now officially canceled, as of 3/24/2020. However, you can still sing by yourself with the following links.


Song Titles


"O Lux Beatissima"


Links Kuimba! (SSA) - Victor C. Johnson O Lux Beatissima - Mark Burrows

OYE Jim Papoulis - Honor Chorus 2011 (rehearsal)

Kuimba! - Lindblom Treble Choir Oye - ACDA Western Division Honor Chorus 2012
Song Titles

"The Star-Spangled Banner"

"The Battle Hymn of the Republic"

Links The Star Spangled Banner - Whitney Houston Battle Hymn of the Republic - Mormon Tabernacle Choir
The Star-Spangled Banner - Concert Band and Soldiers' Chorus


Rehearsals suspended!! (as of Thursday, 3/23/2020)

Dear Honor Chorus Families,

The safety of our students is always number one on our list. As you know that we are in a worldwide situation with the COVID-19. If you have missed the emails regarding the Honors Concert, I would like to let you know that the April 13th Honors Concert has been postponed. And all the rehearsals, and field trips, have been suspended as well. IUSD is working out the details as how to proceed from this point.

As soon as I learn more about this issue, I will notify you. Thank you for your understanding and support. Please stay healthy and be safe!


Rehearsal #6 - 3/10/2020

Good evening Dear Honor Chorus Families,

We did it, number 6 is done! More singers have sung our songs correctly throughout the rehearsal. However, it only takes one voice that makes mistakes to ruin the other 87 singers' hard work!

Both Mr. Chicas and Ms. Solow would like everyone to practice their music carefully, by reading the sheet music correctly.

"O Lux Beatissima" - It should be memorized by now, at least measures 5-41.

"Kuimba!" - We should have all the pitches checked. Be prepared for a small group "sound check" by Ms. Solow next time.

"Oye" - We need to watch the ending "s" at the end of the phrases. Look at Mr. Chicas!

This week's extra credit question is:

What are 3 things that a choir SHOULD do when expressing emotion and what are 3 things a choir SHOULD NOT do when expressing emotion?

From all the parent volunteers, Mr. Chicas and Ms. Solow drew 6 parents' names as our chaperones for the Grammy Museum field trip on Wednesday, 4/15/2020. The selected parents' last names are:

Tran (59)

We have two alternates as well, Sheikhi and Sankar. Our 8 parent chaperones and alternates, please let me know if you have any questions and/or comments about this field trip. If your availability has changed, please let me know ASAP.

Have you checked with Segerstrom ticket window for Honors Concert tickets yet? I look forward to seeing you again next (treats) week. Sing on!


Rehearsal #5 - 3/3/2020

Good evening Dear Honor Chorus Families,

Sorry for the late email. I was at Culverdale Vocal Music Concert and arrived Honor Chorus rehearsal a little late. Ms. Solow had already marked the tardiness for me. This evening we had 70 singers came early or on time! Thank you! As for the other 18 singers, we really need you to be at the rehearsal and ready to sing by 6:30 pm.

We did sectionals during the rehearsal. Ms. Agboola worked with Part 1, Ms. Solow worked with Part 2, while Mr. Chicas worked with Part 3. The parts were supposed to be memorized were not quite good yet. Many mistakes were make, both rhythm and melodic lines. Please check the notes carefully and sing your own part correctly.

At the end of the sectionals, we put all songs together and went through them all. There were definitely parts that were sung incorrectly. Please, please, please look them carefully and sing correctly. Mr. Chicas made rehearsal tracks for Part 2 "O Lux Beatissima". Please see the attached.

A T-shirt design was chosen. It will be sent to the print shop and be ready around Spring Break.

Our homework is to memorize the songs, with the correct note. The extra credit is to translate "Oye" from Spanish to English.

Parents, please help your child to secure an ALL BLACK outfit for the Honors Concert at Segerstrom. If you have any questions regarding the selected outfit, please contact me. In the meantime, the Honors tickets will go on sale at https://www.scfta.org/events/calendar.aspx?mode=grid by this Friday. Lastly, we will find out who our chaperones will be for the Grammy Museum field trip. Thank you for your on going support!


Rehearsal #4 - 2/25/2020

Hello Honor Chorus Families,

We had a very good time at the rehearsal this evening. Everyone received a bag of gummy bears, sour punch candies, and for your health, a tangerine! Some singers received more candies and/or Sun Chips at the end of the rehearsal, because they have earned the highest possible numbers of credits. Extra credits are earned when students:

Arrive on time - 2
Arrive late - 1
No show, regardless of reasons - 0
Turn in forms on time - 2
Turn in forms late - 1
No forms - 0
Extra Credit #1 - 4 points for four languages (most singers got this)
Extra Credit #2 - 4 points for three composers and one editor, 3 points for three composers (most singers got this)

The maximum total extra credits are 22, for three rehearsals (6), two extra credit answers (8), and four forms (8). See the attached form. The 7th rehearsal is the next time that we will pass out more goodies. So, keep turning in those extra credit answers.

Drum roll....... Do you know that Mr. Chicas is one of the four "Teachers of Promise" for the entire IUSD this year? Hooray! Congratulations!

Mr. Chicas led the warm-up exercises, including moving pitches and body movements. That went easily into "O Lux Beatissima." Some of the Part 2 singers were not sure about their pitches. We used solfege at several places. For next week, everyone should have Measures 5 through 23 memorized and start to memorize Measures 27 through 35.

Ms. Solow was very specific about the pitches between Measures 42-51. Part 3 was divided into two parts. Part 2 had a new melody to sing. Part 1 was all singing together this evening, but some singers might form a "soli" section, starting at Measure 48. Some Part 3 singers were singing an octave lower than Part 1. Please take a closer look at your notes. We went all the way from the beginning through Measure 51. For next week, we need to memorize Measures 3-40, correctly.

Our final song for the night started with a dance-like movement. Mr. Chicas showed us how to "Step, step, back, back" to create a basic four beats. While we were stepping in squares, we followed him with the Spanish lyrics and rhythm for Measures 4-11, both verses. We made small increases in speed and finally reached quarter equaled 120 and sang through the whole song! For next week, we need to memorize Measures 12-41 and start to memorize Measure 4-11. Remember to roll your "rrrrrs"!

This week's extra credit question is: What is the difference between a composer and an editor?

Be sure to include your name and Honor Chorus number when you send or write in your answer. By the way, if you are creating an original artwork for the T-Shirt design, DUE NEXT TUESDAY, please put your name on the back of your artwork. Finally, if you have Outdoor Ed next week, but would like to turn in your artwork, please send it as an email attachment, so we can have it while you are gone.

Enjoy a fabulous week and sing on!


Rehearsal #3 - 2/18/2020

Dear Honor Chorus singers and families,

We had another fun rehearsal this evening, even though Ms. Solow was ill and could not make it. Six singers were absent while another 12 were late to the rehearsal. We are improving from last week!

Mr. Chicas led the warm-up exercises right on time. Everyone's favorite exercise was "1, 1-2-1, 1-2-3-2-1, 1-2-3-4-3-2-1, etc." When he asked us to sing a scale and skip notes, we got lost a bit. That would be a great exercise to do at home.

"O Lux Beatissima" was the first song we worked on, from the beginning to the key change at measure 23, in Latin. Part 2 had little issues with pitches at measures 9-13 and 19-23. We need to secure those measures. We need to watch Mr. Chicas for the cup-offs, such as "x" at the end of each "lux." Ms. Schultz came to sing with us  during this song.

While Ms. Solow was absent, Mr. Chicas helped us reviewing measures 3-30 of "Kuimba!". He told us to roll our "Rs" for this song and "O Lux Beatissima." Part 1 needs to keep four eighth notes on one pitch in measures 15, 17, 19, 21, 31, 33, 35, and 37. Part 2 and 3 need to work on moving the singing voice up to the right pitches between measures 14 and 15, by singing an interval of a 5th (Part 2) and a major 6th (Part 3). Part 3 needs to avoid singing an octave lower than Part 1. We stopped at Measure 38. Ms. Larsen came to sing with us for the rest of the evening.

Ms. Lee showed three Honor Chorus shirts from previous years and talked about the Honor Chorus shirt design: Must be an original artwork, digital and/or free-hand, due on 3/3/20, and will be voted by singers. Please include "IUSD Honor Chorus 2020" somewhere in the design.

Everyone loves to sing "Oye." We started at Measure 12 and went through the whole song, Measure 50! We got a little confused when there were three part harmony, such as Measures 19 and 23. Part 3 needs to sing two half notes in Measure 23, no slides in pitches, and know the difference between Measure 18 and 22. Just like "O lux", we need to watch for the cut-offs of "s" at the end of "us."

This week's homework is to start memorizing the songs, the correct way, and fix the mistakes. The extra credit question is: In a few short sentences, please describe what inspired Mr. Jim Papoulis to write "Oye." (You may use the internet.)

Stay healthy! See you next time for a "treats" week!


Rehearsal #2 - 2/11/2020

Dear Honor Chorus Families,

Wow! We had lots of fun this evening learning our songs. Many singers came early and were prepared with all the solfege written in their scores. More singers remembered to sign in at the sign-in table.

According to the Honor Chorus rules, attendance to all rehearsals are mandatory, but 11 singers were absent and another 15 singers came late this evening. Ms. Solow talked about the importance of being early (which means on time in music).

Ms Solow started the warm-up exercises right at 6:30 pm and Mr. Chicas was moving singers around to create permanent seating arrangement. From now on, we each have a special place to sit/stand.

"Kuimba!" was our first song for the night. We checked our written solfege pages before singing together. Measures 15 and 16 worked like the foundation for our practice. Once everyone understood how the notes were connected, we could move onto measures 17 and 18. This time the ending was slightly different. Then we moved onto measures 19 through 22. Part 1 was then divided into two parts, High and Low, at measures 24-26. We went through measure 3 to 28 before putting this song away. Way to go! Lastly, Ms. Solow helped us with the pronunciation of "m-won-go-zo" and told us to hold "m" for an eighth note.  Homework: Practice m. 11-21 of Kuimba on words!

Mr. Chicas asked everyone to check their solfege writing for "O Lun Beatissima." One of the Part 1 singers found a couple of mistakes on the board. Maybe Mr. Chicas was checking students' ability? We then learned to sing in Latin all the way through measure 23. We need to watch Mr. Chicas' conducting hands at measure 20 for the "poco rit." He mentioned the key change at measure 27, which required singers to write solfege in a new key. Homework: Rewrite the solfege for m.27-42, Part 1 starts on "Mi" and Part 2 starts on "Do."

We love "Oye"! Parts 1 and 2 started at measure 12, and Part 3 joined at measure 13 through measure 23. We worked on rhythm, three-part harmony, Spanish, and English lyrics. Then we added measures 28 through 41 with all three parts. We sounded good! Homework: Practice m. 12-41 on words!

Many singers emailed Ms. Lee their last week's extra credit answer early and some turned in their answers on a piece of paper during the rehearsal. Either way is good; however, please send your email answers no later than each Monday. Ms. Lee does have other things to do during school days. Thank you! This week's extra credit question is: Can you name the three composers for our three songs.

Calling all artists...We will have a T-shirt design contest soon. The winning design will be printed on our Honor Chorus T-shirt 2020. It has to be an original art, and with the words "IUSD Honor Chorus 2020" in the design. We will talk about this contest during the next rehearsal.

Again, this whole email will be posted on the front page of https://www.kafm.net/home.html, in case you need it later.

Lastly, some students have NOT turned in their forms. Without a "Rehearsal Permission" form, students will no longer be able to participate in the Honor Chorus, legally. If your student's Honor Chorus numbers are listed below, we do not have his/her form:


Thank you for taking care of paper work. See you next Tuesday!


Rehearsal #1- 2/4/2020

Dear Honor Chorus Families,

Congratulations on a successful first rehearsal! Not counting outdoor education students, we had two absences. Hope they are doing well. Please know that each and every rehearsal is mandatory and necessary.

This evening, many singers came early to find their seats and received their music packet. Mr. Chicas welcomed everyone and led the warm-up exercises.

Ms. Solow was first to show a YouTube video regarding "Kuimba!" and started to teach us the unusual rhythm with the foreign language. (Students should know the language and write it down for this week's extra credit.) We sang like a layer cake: Part 3 went first (the foundation), Part 2 came in second, and Part 1 added the melody on top. We sounded great!

At this time, Ms. Agboola came to help us sing.

Next, Mr. Chicas taught us the pronunciation of the lyrics for "O Lux Beatissima." We spent 30 seconds to figure out and write down the solfege for our own part. We learned to sing up to measure 13. Also, when there is a quarter note for the word, "us", we need to change that into an eighth note with an eighth rest, so that the "s" of "us" can be placed on the eighth rest.

Lastly, Mr. Chicas started "Oye" from measure 28. Just like a different layer cake, Part 3 started first, Part 1 came in second, and Part 2 came in last, then we all sang together. With a little body movement, we looked and sounded energetically! Lots of parents saw us having fun.

Before the end of the rehearsal, Mr. Chicas and Ms. Solow told us to write the solfege onto our music scores for next week. While writing the solfege, we can also do this week's extra credit work:

• What language is each song in? Hint: there are a total of four languages used.

Be sure to either write down the answer and turn it in at the beginning of next week's rehearsal. Or, email the answer to Ms. Lee by next Tuesday, 2/11/2020, 12:00 noon, to earn your extra credits.

Here are some YouTube links for our songs. Please watch them before next Tuesday:


O lux beatissima:


Parents, if you have any questions and/or comments, please contact me at anytime. Thank you for your support. Sing on! See you next week.



IUSD Honor Chorus for 5th and 6th grades only
Tuesdays, 2/4, 2/11, 2/18, 2/25, 3/4, 3/11, 3/18, 3/25, 4/7/2020 6:30 - 8:15 pm Eastwood Elementary School
Saturday, 4/11/2020 12:30 - 2:15 pm
Monday, 4/13/2020 3:45 - 5:30 pm Segerstrom Concert Hall
Monday, 4/13/2020 7:00 - 9:00 pm Segerstrom Concert Hall
Field Trip
Wednesday, 4/15/2020 8:00 am - 3:00 pm Grammy Museum, Los Angeles



Rehearsal Permission Form Honor Chorus T-Shirt Order Form
Field Trip Waiver Form Honor Chorus 2020 Rules
Honor Chorus 2020 Student Photo Release Form  


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