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Little Kids Rock

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Bands & Ensembles, Education, Music, Primary & Elementary Schools

Mission: Little Kids Rock is a national nonprofit organization determined to build a world, through music, where kids can lead creative, rich, purposeful lives, and we won't rest until every public school student has the opportunity to unlock his or her inner music-maker.

Results: Little Kids Rock has: Brought free instrumental music lessons into more than 300,000 kids' lives. Trained and equipped more than 2,360 public school teachers to run Modern Band programs. Distributed more than 46,824 to schools across the U.S. Supported more than 26 inner city public school districts' music programs.

Target demographics: K-12 public school students via music education

Direct beneficiaries per year: 135,000 students and 1,200 teachers make music a dynamic part of the school day

Geographic areas served: California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Washington DC

Programs: We won’t rest until every public school student has the opportunity to unlock his or her inner music-maker. Little Kids Rock has worked hard to ensure access to engaging, relevant, Modern Band music classes and brand new instruments for more than 300,000 under-served schoolchildren across the U.S., at no cost to the students, teachers, or school districts. Little Kids Rock trains public school teachers, donates all of the instruments, resources and support they need to ensure that their kids receive the right to rock! What makes Little Kids Rock's Modern Band program different is that they do more than just donate instruments like guitars, drums and keyboards; they build lasting music programs that focus on teaching kids to perform, improvise and compose the popular music genres that kids already know and love, like rock, pop, hip-hop, reggae and R&B.

Community Stories

56 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been a Little Kids Rock trained teacher since 2010. My students and I love Modern Band! Thanks to LKR, we have enough acoustic guitars for the whole class, several electric guitars and amps, and a Pearl drum kit! Together with a few keyboards I already had for my classroom, we are a real rockin' group! I actually teach Modern Band to all of my fourth and fifth graders during their regular music class. We learn to play the Blues, improvise, and play some rock and roll. I love teaching it and they love learning it. You can see my young Blues Band play on our spring concert last school year on my YouTube channel under the playlist "Modern Band". Music lights up the entire brain and makes connections that impact the rest of a child's education. I give them a strong music background in the lower grades. In the upper grades, they get to play THEIR music! Little Kids Rock is a very worthy and impactful organization. I am definitely a better teacher thanks to Little Kids Rock. Diane Woodward

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a Little Kid's Rock teacher in Dallas Texas. I have been teaching music for a long time and since I started teaching Modern band, I see students come alive and want more! This program has allowed me to reach even those that have been "troubled" or "lost". Love it!

2 Samuel G.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Little Kids Rock is an absolutely amazing organization that serves children all around the country to receive music education. I am a 4th grade special education teacher and I volunteer at my school to do a music after-school program. Little Kids Rock has donated all the instruments that I need to get the kids started. They have also provided extremely accessible lesson plans and music charts that I use in every lesson that I teach. They make teaching music as easy as possible. As long as you have a passion for it, they make sure you have the tools to succeed.

2 braggcjoy3333

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

For seventeen years I've taught music to children whose parents could never dream of giving them lessons. Little Kids Rock steps in and helps with instruments and modern curriculum to make a difference in the lives of kids in need. Donors who help this organization are putting tools right into the teachers and kids hands! Thank you!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a teacher who has instruments, provided by Little Kids Rock. It is an amazing experience for children to play a guitar at school. Many of them just don't have the funds for an instrument, let alone lessons. That's where Little Kids Rock steps in. To provide instruments and training to teachers. Seeing kids play the modern music that moves them is such a blessing.

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Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a music teacher for Chicago Public Schools. Little Kids Rock has provided our program with instruments, curriculum, and support. The community of LKR teachers from all over the country is inspiring. LKR is well run and responsive to our needs. I'm looking forward to implementing their curriculum during the 2015-2016 school year, and hopefully for many years to come.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended a Little Kids Rock teacher training in 2010 — all day on Saturday and Sunday. I came away with a great deal of valuable curriculum and teaching ideas. Two weeks later, my school received 30 three-quarter-size nylon string acoustic guitars, each with its own case. Every year since then, my students have been able to take these guitars home over night to practice chords and songs. They perform, they coach each other, some of them are strengthening relationships with a parent or older sibling or aunt who plays guitar and works with them at home. These are 9 and 10 year old children in a city school. Little Kids Rock is a powerful motivating force for kids in my school. The support the organization has provided in succeeding years has been terrific. I feel so lucky to be a Little Kids Rock teacher.

Jennifer422

Client Served

Rating: 5

This amazing charity has supplied my 150 students and myself with amazing instruments! We love little kids Rock!!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Words cannot describe the amount of love and magic that this brings! :-)

Diane133

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been a Little Kids Rock teacher since 2010. LKR provided my elementary music classroom with acoustic guitars and me with plenty of training, so that I was able to introduce Modern Band as another "stream" into my classes. They also provide an ongoing "Teacher Hang" website where I can connect with other Little Kids Rock teachers across the nation and download tons of materials, as well as share materials and ideas, share videos of my students, and make friends with like-minded colleagues. They have also provided some electric guitars, including one Taylor that just arrived out of nowhere one day, and is the pride of my classroom. They have promised me a trap set next. Because of LKR, my students have had the opportunity to play with James Burton (Elvis' and others' lead guitarist) twice, an experience of a lifetime for them and for me. My students perform annually at Artfest, which is the largest children's arts festival in the South (Shreveport, LA) and give a spring concert.

This past summer, I flew to Ft. Collins, CO and attended the LKR National Conference for Teachers for three days at CSU. This was practically free for me (other than the flight), and I learned so much that I was able to take back to my students. I can hardly wait to go next summer!

I am providing so much more for my students than just the fun of playing "their music", although this is significant. All of the research shows that learning to play an instrument actually increases the volume of the corpus callosum (part of the brain that connects the hemispheres) and creates more connections in the brain than any other activity that has been studied. This helps my students with executive function, fine motor and emotional growth. I know it has a very positive impact on all of their other studies.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I'm proud to have served Little Kids Rock for almost 8 years.

A big chunk of my professional energies involves providing consulting services to companies serving the K12 education sector . I see an endless variety of different products, programs and practices and about education being applied across the US schools and districts.

At the individual school and classroom level, I can honestly say that for very small amounts of funding, I can't think of many other educational program that provides anywhere near the level of impact on children's lives and educational progress that Little Kids Rock provides. LKR provides an amazing ROI.

In addition, Little Kids Rock benefits teachers-through enabling many to do what they really want to do: teach and impact kids lives.

And oh yeah, there's also the bit about just how totally cool it is seeing kids' total enjoyment making music they love with other kids!!!

Anthony50

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I was ready to leave teaching. As a NYC music teacher after 8 years of not having supplies I was ready to give up. After taking the LKR workshop I had all the supplies and support I needed. It has been 7 years since then. LKR saved me career and has been changing my students lives for the better!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been working alongside Little Kids Rock since 2011 and have had the pleasure of seeing all of the amazing things this organization does, year after year. I have seen the smiles on children's faces when their favorite musician stops by their school to drop off new guitars. I have seen their excitement when Lady Gaga enters the room. I have seen what happens when they are given the opportunity to play on stage with some of the greatest living legends in rock and roll. Not only does Little Kids Rock do wonderful things for the children and schools they serve, they make sure everybody has a blast along the way! I cannot think of a cooler nonprofit!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with helping Little Kids Rock raise funds, awareness, and plan events that have furthered their mission of bringing a lifelong gift of music two children. This organization does not pump up it's stats, or make specious claims. They just do great work, and do it very well. It is an honor to be associated with the good people at Little Kids Rock and the children they serve!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a general music teacher in a inner city, low income middle school in San Francisco. This is my fourth year working with Little Kids Rock. I can't say enough great things about this organization. First, Little Kids Rock does exactly what they say they are going to do…they put instruments in the hands of children. Because of Little Kids Rock, all of my students are able to learn on the acoustic guitar. LKR have donated acoustic guitars, keyboards, electric guitars and bass guitars to my classroom.
The curriculum that Little Kids Rock has is so simple and so intelligent. The illustrations and photos that they use in their curriculum help me to serve my general population, my English language learners and my Special Education students. The lesson plans cover exactly what I need in order to teach to the standards.
Little Kids Rock has also given my students the opportunity to play with professional musicians at their Gala events. These events have changed the way some of my students feel about themselves and has helped them increase their self esteem through doing something that they love.
I LOVE Little Kids Rock!

1 Merle S.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This organization has changed the lives of hundreds of my students over the past 7 years. I work in a school of poverty where students struggle every day with math and language arts. This organization has given students so much to hope for as they excel in music class. Students will never be alone knowing that they have something that they love doing (playing music)!! I am so grateful that this organization has supported me every step of the way and continue to do so. No email or phone call goes unanswered. More importantly what they have reaches the people who need it. Little Kids Rock really ROCK!!

1 Jeni2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I work in Dallas, TX in a low SES neighborhood and this organization is giving me free instruments to use with my students. These kids don't get all of the best opportunities, but thanks to Little Kids Rock, they do get the opportunity to learn the joy of making music.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I teach music in a large public high school in NY. The first time I heard of Little Kids Rock I thought i would take a chance because I wanted to do something new for my students, and we did not have the money to buy new instruments. The training session was an unbelievable wealth of information, and was the best thing I have ever done in my 8 year career as a teacher. The joy on the kids' faces when we opened guitars was great, and many of them were shocked that they were just given to our school. The methods are SO easy to use, and The Hang puts everything together in the easiest way. Kids learned to play so quickly because they were excited about what they were learning and it was relevant to them. Their parents were dumbfounded at the spring concert when they saw everything their kids could do, and many of them didn't believe their son or daughter could play drums or keyboard. The entire thing was so rewarding for the students, the parents, the school and myself, I can't recommend it enough. Kids need to make music, not just read and write about it. This idea is the key that LKR is based on, and I couldn't agree more. THANK YOU for bringing the chance of making music to my school!!!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I have helped hundreds of students experience music after school in Boyle Heights. In my seven years teaching LKR many of my students continue to perform in the community. A great program that has given countless students an opportunity to rock out they would've never had.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been teaching music for the last four years with Little Kids Rock and it has revolutionized my teaching. Their Modern Band approach to music for kids is so much fun - you forget how much you are learning. The tools they provide make it an easy access for the kids to learn the music they love. And the instruments they put into schools open up so many doors for our kids! My own students have begun to write songs and share their talents in many performances through the year. They grow in confidence, skills, and commitment as they fall in love with making music - a pastime they will enjoy for life!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Little Kids Rock (LKR) daily transforms lives through music. The teacher's lives are enriched and the students receive training that will positively impact their lives. Personally, I have seen children that have "given-up" on school, turn around their lives to becoming a leader in their school - and it was all due to the influence of Little Kids Rock. Through Little Kids Rock the students are taught: PRACTICE is needed to succeed - it's not just luck. WE DEPEND ON EACH OTHER - everyone is important. And that if you work really hard together as a group.... There is the "coolness" factor that changes everything for the student (and teacher)!! The support from LKR headquarters is always there. The directors of LKR give opportunities to the teachers of LKR so that the entire organization is never stagnate, but is constantly progressing. LKR needs to be in every school! What would happen to education if the concepts of LKR were used in every school? That is the change education needs!!!