The Leading Tone took a step forward this semester and added recorders to its musical program!
The addition of the woodwind instrument, means students are continuing to build their skill sets and their musical ability. Until now, when it comes to musical instruments, The Leading Tone has focused on Bucket Band -- an activity that helps students learn through play, imitation, and experimentation, but doesn’t necessarily require fine muscle control. As the students progress, the program is evolving to build upon their skills and incorporate fine motor control.
Recorders are great instruments that are played across all skill levels --from absolute beginners to the seasoned professional; they're also an excellent teaching tool. While recorders are a part of the woodwind family, our recorders are plastic, so students at this stage don't have to worry about the issues inherent with a wooden recorder, like cracking and humidity. The recorders are light and durable, and relatively inexpensive too. They can be played individually or as an ensemble without the need for additional instruments. Each recorder we have is assigned to a student for the duration of the semester -- allowing for children to practice at home, outside our twice weekly sessions, and build upon their skills at their pace, as well as instill a sense of personal pride and responsibility.
Recorders are excellent tools for teaching students how to read, play, and feel music. They're also great to teach musicality and a sense of musicianship. It's extremely beneficial in helping children learn how to coordinate their fingers, their tongue and their breath -- a skill set that will serve them well down the line for learning any instrument. The ability to play the instrument independently is incredibly important to personal growth because it puts a child in a position of power -- they begin constructing their own understanding of music and their own songs. In addition to the benefits associated with the learning of different concepts and acquiring new skills, independent musical appreciation also creates a safe outlet for self-expression.
Music teaches students the value of sustained effort and the rewards of hard work. No one is born knowing how to play an instrument; the process of struggling to acquire a skill, and the practice needed to improve upon it, teach determination, discipline, and self-reflection.
The Leading Tone is excited to add recorders and help students begin to forge new understandings. The more they know, the more they grow, and the more they can create.