Thank you so much for being such generous individuals. The music at KALC has been growing each year and is giving students an important outlet during the course of their day. Through your generosity students now have another option to experience the joy that is music.
Our ukuleles were delivered during the school and students from my guitar classes couldn't wait to get their hands on these "baby" guitars. This was such a big deal to students that they were volunteering to stay after school to help unpack and tune the ukuleles so I could work on other things. Really I knew they just want to excuse to play ukulele.
Students were forced to just look at the ukuleles hanging out in the room until our new school year began. Middle school students were probably the most excited to get started with ukulele classes. This class actually has quite a long waiting list of students to join indicating that it was certainly the right instrument to get them introduced to the stringed instrument family. We have been working on Am, F, C, and G. G is our most difficult chord, but the work and effort that they are putting in tells me that G will be old hat soon. They are looking forward to performing already, pushing me to decide on a date and making suggestions for other songs that they would like to play as well.
High school students are getting ready to do their first public performance. This class has been working on C'Lo Green's Forget You. The chorus section of the song came very easily to this class, but they soon realized that ukulele isn't just a toy. Em has been giving them some serious issues so the middle section of this song is our current nemesis. They chose for their first public performance to be for the middle school students as some background music during lunch. They seem less intimidated playing for the younger students rather than their peers. Little do they know that there are some middle school ukulele players that will be watching everything with a pretty good knowledge of what should be happening.
Music classes play a vital part in over 25% of our students day. They look forward to "taking a break" from their academic classes and then actually end up working even harder when they come to music class. While frustrations can be high due to the high expectations that students have for themselves, they are showing incredible majority in the ability to make a mistake, acknowledge it and become solution oriented. It is my hope that the attitudes and habits that they are learning while playing the ukulele carry over into all other areas of their lives.
Thank you so much for seeing the importance of music in education.