Education Through Music, Inc.

Education Through Music (ETM) was formed in 1991 with a mission to promote the use of music in inner-city schools and schools in disadvantaged areas, as a means of enhancing students' academic performance and general development. At ETM, we believe every child deserves a well-rounded education: one that includes music both as a subject in its own right and as a means of supporting learning in other areas. ETM makes music education a reality for thousands of children who would otherwise have limited or no exposure to the arts, uses music instruction to strengthen students' ability to learn in all areas, and works to build schools' capacity to sustain programs.
May 19, 2016

Bringing a Community Together Through Music

Students sing joyfully as their teacher conducts!
Students sing joyfully as their teacher conducts!

Happy spring from ETM!

The school year may be wrapping up, but our partner school students are still hard at work building a wealth of skills and discovering new talents during their weekly in-school music classes. This has been an exciting year where students have improved their cognitive reasoning and boosted their self-esteem through the greatest gift of all: music. Your generosity is impacting over 27,000 students across New York City. Because of you, our students are becoming well-rounded children with brighter futures ahead.

For our first-year partner school students, this has been an especially incredible and thrilling year because it was the first time that comprehensive music instruction played a constant role in their learning experience. And because of this opportunity, they have started to think differently about themselves, their futures, and their education. The music program also provides an exciting new avenue to unify the communities of first-year partner schools. For many parents, events such as student concerts foster a new, positive association with their child’s school and offer them a way to engage with other members of the school community.

For P.S. 277 in the Bronx, the thriving music program is making a huge difference in the community. The school is located in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx and serves approximately 440 students in grades Pre-K-5. Of these 440 students, 99% are students are of color, 16% are English Language Learners, 94% qualify for the Federal Free/Reduced Price Lunch Program, and 10% have special needs.

ETM music teacher Adrianna Lee has witnessed first-hand the impact the music program has had on the school. She believes that the program has genuinely become embedded in the school’s culture.

“I have heard such wonderful feedback from many of the teachers at the school. Before the winter break, I took the select chorus caroling around the school. The 1st-grade teacher told me that it was such a lovely gift to both the kids and teachers and that no one had ever done anything like that with such energy and enthusiasm. Recently, I spoke to the receptionist who said that she was so impressed by the quality of the kid's singing. She said that there were so many kids who were participating with such enthusiasm and that she had no idea how many kids were so talented at the school. Finally, she thanked me for bringing it out of the students in a way that she'd never seen.”

The students’ hard work culminated in a spectacular spring concert in April. The auditorium was packed with parents, guardians, and members of the community. Each song was greeted with thunderous applause as the students beamed with effusive pride. Ms. Lee had the students sing advanced repertoire that included songs in different languages, such as Spanish, Hebrew, Zulu, and Swahili.

This marvelous event was emblematic of how far the music program has gone today and how much music education can accomplish in just one year. Next year, P.S. 277 hopes to start an orchestra program, which will give students another opportunity to further develop their music skills.

Your support has been instrumental in the success of P.S. 277’s music program and the success of all of our first-year partner schools. You have helped to expand the horizons of students, foster a deeper appreciation for music within the school, and bring together the community. Help us promote music education in inner-city schools by sharing this report with your friends and family. Let them know the impact their donation can have!

Students are deeply engaged in music instruction!
Students are deeply engaged in music instruction!
Student perform with pride at a spring concert!
Student perform with pride at a spring concert!

Links:

Apr 20, 2016

Because of Music, I Believe in Myself

Two bassists concentrate on their music making!
Two bassists concentrate on their music making!

Happy Spring from ETM! As we transition into warmer weather, our partner school students are also experiencing marvelous transformations because of your generous support. Thanks to you, nearly 27,000 children at 48 partner schools in all five boroughs of New York City are using music as a means to grow academically and emotionally through exciting, interactive learning experiences.

Music class provides a safe, nurturing environment that promotes self-expression in children while also improving analytical reasoning, fostering language development, and strengthening social skills. Music teachers serve as champions for students’ growth, supporting their social and emotional development. For Miguel, a 7th grader from the Bronx, encouragement from his music teacher helped him overcome his shyness and build self-esteem.

Because of his introverted nature, Miguel was a very quiet student who often seemed sad and was apprehensive about expressing himself. Nonetheless, Miguel was an undeniably talented trombone player—but in the middle of the year, he began to feel uncertain about his place in the school’s band and considered quitting. His ETM music teacher knew that Miguel had natural musical instincts and decided that perhaps a simple change in instrument could be the boost Miguel needed for his self-confidence. His teacher suggested the tuba since it requires similar technique to the trombone. And it worked!

His teacher shared, “The tuba hooked him. We had our first tuba lesson, and he was a natural.  He not only sounded great on the tuba and picked up reading the lower written music quickly, but you could see an excitement in his eyes that had not been there before.” Playing the tuba reignited Miguel’s love for band and inspired him to become more present in school. Now he is performing better academically and is bonding with his bandmates. “Miguel’s grades have improved tremendously,” explained his teacher, “He is in honors classes and was at the recent honors assembly, but most noticeably, he is beginning to open up. It is tough for a quiet person to open up, but band has helped him do that. And now the band has an awesome tuba player who is excited to be there! Band is the only class in the school where students stay together for all three years, so the kids develop their own relationships that they wouldn't have anywhere else.”

That music was able to transform Miguel into a child who has a stronger sense of self-esteem and self-worth is a wonderful testament to the opportunities made possible by your generous support. The impact you have had on Miguel has put him on a path towards a successful life both in and out of school. Because you believe in our students, they are starting to believe in themselves, too! Show your support for ETM by sharing this report with a family member or a friend. Let them how far their generosity can go.

5th graders are eager to start their band concert!
5th graders are eager to start their band concert!
A saxophone player gets into the groove!
A saxophone player gets into the groove!
A trumpeter plays with dedication!
A trumpeter plays with dedication!

Links:

Feb 18, 2016

Music Helped Me Focus My Energy

Band students pose after a concert!
Band students pose after a concert!

We’re halfway through the school year, and because of your generous support, our partner school students are fully immersed in their in-school weekly music classes. By now, music instruction has begun to take a clear shape, with teachers sculpting students’ minds through new musical concepts and skills, and students transferring this knowledge beyond the classroom and into their daily lives. These experiences can transform a child’s personality and their attitude towards school, most especially the students at our first-year partner schools—many of whom are receiving music for the first time.

For instance, Arianna, a second-grader at PS 8 in the Bronx, is using music to focus her energy and to develop stronger social skills. Arianna is a very rambunctious and energetic child. During the beginning of the year, it was difficult for her to sit still and to follow directions. Arianna’s outbursts would distract her classmates during instruction and she would have trouble connecting with them, often feeling isolated from peers. Participating in movement and group activities in music class is giving Arianna a means to channel her energy and helping her stay at the same pace as her classmates. Arianna also now happily assists her ETM music teacher, Ms. Feinberg, in passing out worksheets and collecting homework during class. Because music has given Arianna an outlet for her energy, her focus and concentration have improved significantly. She is positively engaging with her peers and listens carefully to directions.

One day, at the start of class, Arianna called out happily, "Music! We have music!" Then Arianna ran over to Ms. Feinberg and gave her big hug, offering her a drawing. Ms. Feinberg shared, “It was a picture of me smiling, and it said ‘Music Teacher’ at the top. Arianna said, ‘It's you! Do you like it?!’ I told her that I loved it and that it warmed my heart. I thanked her and told her that I couldn't wait to show it to all my friends and family. I gave her a big hug and said, ‘Let's start music class!’ Arianna nodded joyfully and sat in her spot, and has been able to stay in her spot during every class since.”

Arianna’s school, PS 8 is a first-year partner school located in the Fordham Manor neighborhood of the Bronx. The partnership between P.S. 8 and ETM began when the school’s principal had a dream of bringing music education to the K-5 school’s nearly 1,100 students. After learning about ETM’s music programs, she turned her dream into a reality. Now every student receives weekly music instruction provided by two music teachers, and this past December every student performed in a winter concert. Because of wonderful donors like you and your kind contributions, schools like PS 8 who have never before had music are now able to share the gift of music education with their students—deserving children like Arianna.

We thank you for supporting our mission and believing in our students! Help us promote music education in inner-city schools by sharing this report with your friends and family. Let them know just how far their support can go!

A saxophone player gets into his groove!
A saxophone player gets into his groove!
Band students play with dedication!
Band students play with dedication!
Young students sing at a holiday concert!
Young students sing at a holiday concert!

Links:

 
   

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