The Pre-K Academy at West Avenue aims to nurture students’ growth and development in a variety of ways, including the playful, joyful, and musical aspects. In music class, the children will learn songs and poems, move in response to music (dance), play traditional and invented games, investigate instruments, and listen to music from around the world.
From the child’s point of view, class will be all about singing, playing, interacting, and enjoying, but there is deeper meaning to each activity: through songs and poems, the children will internalize the natural beat, rhythms and cadences of English and Spanish. With dance, purposeful movement, and games, they will not only hone their coordination and balance, but they will graciously interact with their classmates to build social-emotional skills and awareness of others. In the process of investigating and responding to rhythm instruments (including various drums, bells, shakers, and scrapers), your children will develop creativity and curiosity, understanding of scientific principles like cause and effect, and personal perseverance to make pleasing music. In listening to various genres of music from around the world, the children will recognize commonalities and differences between individual styles, as well as learning about diverse cultures through their music.
In addition, making music has been proven to activate numeracy and literacy within the developing brain, allowing learners to make connections between their emerging understanding of math, reading, science and society. While all classrooms will utilize music throughout the day to enrich learning, having music class will provide our students with opportunities to create their own music, access critical thinking skills, develop a musical vocabulary, and build connections between various disciplines.
My mission as a music teacher is for students to begin to understand and resonate with each of these statements:
- I am treasured. I am brave. I am capable. I am considerate. I am artistic. I am musical.
- Music is intentionally organized sound -- without organization, it is just noise.
- Music must include rhythmic, melodic, and expressive qualities in order to be satisfying.
- Musicians are able to identify and extract those values (rhythm, melody, expression) by ear and transfer them to corporal movement.
- Musicians are able to articulate their own understanding of folk, classical, and modern music and/or create (improvise) their own music in traditional written forms.
- Worthwhile music stimulates emotional and physical responses, encourages us to question and comprehend various points of view, and to become better, more compassionate, more fully HUMAN individuals.