Sunday, November 15, 2015

Another wonderful Cafe

This was a magical week at SK for music as our Music and Art Cafe tradition was passed down to a new set of aspiring musicians.  It was amazing to watch the 8th graders take on a leadership role this year. They knew just what to do, since so many of them were involved with it last year, but they did it so differently than our 8th graders last year did. That is what I love about this tradition. It so reflects the personalities and talents of the kids.  They are not just sharing music, they are exploring their identities.  We had so many different wonderful things happen that it is impossible for kids to be part of it and not expand their concept of what it means to be a musician.  We had empowering rock music, beautiful classical music, heart wrenching vocal ballads, Michael Jackson music and no less than five brilliant original compositions composed and arranged by  students. It is not until the performance is over that the new fifth graders, participating for the first time, really realize what I meant when I told them, in the initial meeting about the cafe, that they can do anything.  Congratulations Middle Schoolers.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

My two favorite moments this week at SK both involved our adorable kindergartners. I love the way they look up to the middle schoolers and love the way that SK is designed to facilitate lots of interactions between them. For weeks the kindergarteners have been begging to see their hero, Nik, come down from the mountains of 8th grade-land to perform a song for them. They know Nik so well because he helps out in the kindergarten room once a week and they were astonished to find out that he goes to music class just like they do. So this Wednesday's kindergarten class began with a performance by Nik and Matthew of an incredible piano piece they composed together (you can hear this piece too if you come to the music and art cafe on Friday the 13th). It was great to see Nik and Matthew experience the impact their music had on the kindergarteners and it was great to watch the kindergarteners love the performance.

My other favorite moment this week happened when we went on a little field trip to the fish lab and the kindergarteners discovered a snail on the side of the fish tank. Lisa answered all sorts of questions about snails and then we wrote a new verse for our animal song about snails. This was a very special week for them and I can't stress enough how nice it is to work at a school that really knows the meaning of community.