Imagine being a music teacher and sitting in a classroom full of children excited to finally learn a new song. Some of them are trying to pluck a few nots to see if they can learn the new song by themselves, while others are strumming chords to impress their peers. Your role is to redirect their excitement into a productive music lesson. You give a cue to play the first note and you hear that some of the children produce a beautiful tone but that their notes are a little bit delayed. Others might even play the correct rhythms, but their sound requires some improvement. After 20 minutes of rehearsing you’ve finally achieved this beautiful sound from the entire ensemble which you’ve been looking for.
Now, adjust this picture and imagine everyone being in a different location. Some microphones are better while other ones are worse. Some instruments are out of tune. You have to constantly mute/unmute students in your group to be able to hear. Now, you know how many challenges music teachers have to face in order to provide a high quality music education online.
This is exactly why we are so happy to hear so many positive updates from the music programs supported by the GSI Foundation. Children’s Music Workshop has been working really hard to adapt very quickly to this new platform of online education. They’ve been giving weekly music lessons that include ukulele and other instrumental instruction, general music education and appearances from guest artists who educate and entertain the students. We’re so happy to hear that the lessons are progressively more and more successful with each week and that Children’s Music Workshop has found innovative ways to provide music education in public schools.