To be a member of the Music for Minors family is an honor and a privilege because our mission is to BRING MUSIC INTO THE LIVES OF CHILDREN WHO WOULD NOT EXPERIENCE AND ASSIMILATE A LIFELONG LOVE OF MUSIC.
Speaking as an elementary school teacher with a passion for music, I believe a childs learning modalities are stimulated when music is an integral part of their lives be it in or out of the classroom setting. Music effects moods, body rhythms, relationships, and more.
MFM has and will continue to enrich childrens inner and outer beings and provide our next generations with a ZEST in every realm of development.
I am a principal pf a school in San Mateo. We love the Music for Minors program! the docents are amazing! Our children love when they are there and they love the lessons. Working with the MFM group does put extra work on my plate- it completely enriches our school!
The Music for Minors Program is great. Our primary students develop a strong musical foundation. Most of the participants go on to play instruments in middle schhol and high school. In a age when schools are cutting electives and extras, Music for Minors offers students an essential ingredient to a well rounded education.
In the fall of 1999, I received fantastic training from Music for Minors that has allowed me to share my love of music with over 1000 young students in the last ten years. The information I received, the resources I have had available, and the support for my efforts in teaching music under the sponsorship of Music for Minors has been invaluable. Without this, the school at which I volunteer would not have a music program for the younger students (K-3).
I've been a docent for 7 years, providing 1/2 hour music classes to two local 2nd grade classrooms. Music for Minors trains its docents (the training is thorough and brilliant), develops the relationships with the schools, and provides ongoing support. All you have to do is prepare your lessons and show up to give them. MFM offers docents free workshops throughout the year so they can continue to build their repertoire and skills. I can't speak highly enough about MFM. It provides a critical need for our children. Arts are basic!
For ten years I have been teaching in the MFM music program which reaches into classrooms that have no specific music program in their curriculum. Music for Minors prepares their teachers with a college course in the basics of music, then supplies them with a library of materials to use in the classroom. Each week we go into the classrooms and provide the students with singing, movement and rhythm instruments. There are always on-going programs to give MFM teachers new materials and ideas to enhance their programs. The quality and generous spirit that you find in MFM teachers is truly an inspiration. We are there to share music to all children. When a school decides to hire a music teacher, we then leave and know that our mission in music has been accomplished.
Once upon a time, my friend Ellie convinced me to become a MFM docent and share my love of music with our most important gifts, our children. As I began the discovery of what music does for children, I realized the credibility of Music for Minors and its rich resources. As a passionate elementary teacher, I believe that in order to raise a whole child, music must be an integral part of their daily routine. I am so proud to still be enveloped in Music for Minors, 22 years later!
MFM is an amazing organization that has allowed me to personally make a positive contribution to the lives of hundreds of young kids through music. I didn't learn of MFM until, at the age of 61, I was retired from a PHD level engineering job and self-employed by my own acoustical consulting company. As a youth I had played the trombone in numerous bands, and ever since my teenage years, I had been singing in choruses and choirs. Therefore, having the available time and the musical background, I was in a perfect position to take advantage of MFM's program. I took the amazing 14-week training course they provide through a local community college, and in late 1998, I walked into my first classroom, a third grade at a Title 1 (less affluent) school in San Jose. When I looked at the 33 faces staring at me, I noticed that nearly all of them had black hair (my hair was blonde at that age). I wondered if I would be able to establish a rapport with kids young enough to be my grandchildren and with kids from cultures somewhat different from mine. I needn't have worried. Music seems to easily overcome age and ethnic differences. I taught them songs I had learned in camp when I was that age. I taught them folk dances I had learned in graduate school. I taught them basic musical symbols and notation. I taught them rhythmic claps that we then used to reward classroom accomplishments. I brought in instrumentalist friends, who explained their instruments and often let the kids try to play them. We put on performances for the parents. The kids loved it, and so did I. For five additional years, I was a MFM docent at three different San Jose schools. Unlike many docents, I didn't have kids in a particular school, so I went wherever MFM needed me. As my confidence grew, I gradually increased the number of classes I taught. It was especially gratifying when, between classes, I would wander out on the playground at recess and see kids teaching other kids the songs and dances I had taught them. After I stopped teaching, I joined the board, and have been on it for the last three years.
I first found out about Music for Minors (MFM)in 2004, and it sounded like just the organization I was looking for to expand the music offerings at my children's elementary school. The staff at MFM was very supportive of my efforts to start the MFM program at Marshall Lane. The docent training program led by Chris Burke is excellent, and it gave me a solid foundation for teaching music in the classroom. The wealth of resources available to new and continuing docents is fantastic. I truly enjoyed my five years as a docent with MFM.
As a founding member of Music for Minors I have been privileged to see how music in our public schools has enriched and enhanced education for our children,. They learn to clap, sing, move and use sequential learning which helps in all academic work. We teach about 7,000 children per year and have been in Santa Clara, San Mateo Counties for over 30 years. Without this program, children would have no music. It is essential to contiue to this program. Without it we will leave a gap in our society where as adults, none of these children will have any appreication for the arts.