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Creating Community Inside and Outside the Music Classroom

The Impact Music Class can Have on an Entire School

When Education Through Music partners with a school to provide comprehensive music education, we make a positive impact not only on the students we work with but on the entire school community, from the teachers to the administration to the students’ families. We wanted to explore every level of this and spoke with Gina Guerrero, a 4th-grade teacher at ETM Partner School P.S. 46 in the Bronx to tell us what she’s noticed since music was offered at her school.

The pandemic silenced our physical music rooms. This is the first time for many students that they’ve had the chance to make music together again.

Education Through Music (ETM): Ms. Guerrero, what was school like before music was introduced? 

Gina Guerrero (GG): Starting with a deep question. We’ve had several programs come and go in 16 years, many short-lived and some for lower grade students. They’ve only introduced a scheduled music program in the last 3 or 4 years. Then we had the pandemic. So this is like the first year my kids got a weekly, structured music class. 


ETM: Have you noticed any change in your students since music was introduced?

GG: They’re enthusiastic when they come [to music class]. They’re much more enthusiastic about getting out of the classroom and going to music as opposed to the science lab or the technology lab. So that’s a good thing.


ETM: How would you say music has impacted your school community? 

GG: It’s only been 4 months but from what I’ve seen, they like it. They’ve never touched a ukelele before, they’ve never worked as a choral group. And that helps their overall [skills in] working as a unit. 


ETM: Do you think that music is important to your student’s development?

A music teachers plays a drum during music class.
“They’ve never touched a ukelele before, they’ve never worked as a choral group.”

GG: I love music so much and have a passion. I play guitar. So anytime [I can], I try to give any kind of music in the class whatever it is. Like we do video alouds, we’ll play a lyric video so the students get the message from the visuals and the [words on the screen]. I play them songs or we’ll read articles about jazz. And we’ll have music as a timer. 

I know I try and a lot of teachers try. I would love it if we could have after-school lessons or something like that. But the kids enjoy coming here. 


Music is Every Child's Right

Countless children still don’t have access to high-quality music education. Education Through Music is on a mission to change that! ETM partners with NYC schools to make sure that every child at every school has access to high-quality music education and you can help us continue this amazing work.

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