Music at Glen Cove

Music at Glen Cove

Each week students at all grade levels participate in a chorus program.  There are many good reasons to have children sing each week.  Zoltan Kodaly, a noted teacher of music and composer, believed that to develop a sense of pitch you have to learn 50 songs a year for several years.  It is best to learn singing (and languages) in early childhood as this is when we are most receptive to learning sounds and how to communicate.  Mostly everyone can sing and develop a sense of pitch if there is enough practice without too much criticism.  When an adult says they are tone deaf or can't sing, it is probably because they have not learn 50 songs a year and when they do sing they are criticized for being out of tune.

There are lots of studies and research on the positive effects of music.  One study suggests that singing in a group produces the most oxytocin of any activity the people do.  Oxytocin is chemical the body produces that neutralizes cortisol, the chemical produced when we are under stress. Singing is the antidote to stress! For students who are struggling with reading, singing songs each Friday with the words on a projector is a way for them to develop fluency and increase vocabulary.  For all students it is important to memorize songs and to have a chance to perform at the end of the year.  Singing is fun and has a way of bringing students together both now and later in their lives.  Former students from Glen Cove all know about 180 songs and apparently sing them still as adults when they get together.

In our classrooms, many teachers play music in the background.  Depending on the music, this can improve concentration and creates a positive atmosphere in the classrooms.  It also provides exposure to different kinds of music such as classical.  Our musical tastes are largely in place by our late teens.  If children have not been substantially exposed to a variety of music, their tastes as adults will be more limited.  This is a concern to classical and jazz performers who are seeing their audiences dwindle.  Classes have numerous recordings of piano music made by Mr. Allison over the years -- music of Bach, Brahms, Scarlatti, etc.  If you would like some of these recordings, call the school.

At Glen Cove, our PTA has generously sponsored many concerts for children.  We teach students how to be a good audience by being absolutely quiet during performances and by clapping to show appreciation.  Performers are delighted to play for the students at Glen Cove.