I'm glad you love music! Just like you, I fell in love with music in middle school, and chasing that love has brought me some the greatest experiences of my life!!!
In terms of what you need to take in high school, it completely depends on who you are as a musician. If you play a wind/brass/percussion instrument, band is almost compulsory. A majority of music education is band-based. If you play a string instrument, you should join the school orchestra if it exists. Some high schools don't have an orchestra, so the next best thing is joining a local youth orchestra. If you're a singer, get involved in the choir! These three courses are the pillars of music education.
Of course, outside of these three things, there are other types of music courses that are offered at certain high schools. If you're lucky, you'll be going to a high school that has AP Music Theory. It's a good course to get the basic music theory skills that are needed when you pursue a college education. If you're EXTREMELY lucky, you could go to an IB high school, and the course IB music is great. It's more of a history/analysis course than a theory course. I took AP Theory before IB music, and that theoretical knowledge helped me excel in analyzing the world music presented in IB music.
This is A LOT of information, but try to get out of it what you can. The bottom line is, in high school you have to beef up performance and education credits in order to expand your musical knowledge. This all goes into being accepted to a good college for music education, and eventually earning your teaching license and teaching classes of your own!
Joey recommends the following next steps:
- Find out about the high schools in your area and what sort of programs they have to offer. If you're out of zone from the high school that draws your attention, start preparing variance applications.