Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Can I Get a Witness?

Working on my book today, I pulled up some comments from my 8thgrade class of 2014 about what music meant to them. I’ve spent a lifetime trying to articulate why the arts are important, but these testimonies are so much more eloquent than I could ever be. So next time I’m invited to talk at a Conference, I think I’ll just invite some kids, say a few words about the importance of music and shout out, “Can I get a witness?!!” and have the kids come forward to say it all so much better. Listen to their heartfelt eloquence here:

Music is not just banging on a drum to make a sound. People learn history and rhythm and life skills from music. Music is a part of life because it keeps you sane, it keeps you cool and composed through the many wavy roads in what is called life.   -Josie 

Music is essential to a kid’s academic development. As a middle school student, the connection that I made from music to academics was astounding. I would use music techniques and to study and finish work. It was an important part of my life and I don’t know where I would have been if I didn’t have it.  –Sophia

Music is what completes an education. It is such an essential part of our culture and everyday life that taking it away would be like taking away color from nature and flavor from food.  – Nate 

Music is the key to life if taught correctly. It can open new doors and take you to places you’ve never been before.   –Nashira

Learning music made me think in a way I never had before. It made my brain more flexible. –Claire 

For some kids, music is the voice they never had.  – Casaun

Music is very important because it gives kids a way to express themselves. It can calm them or energize them. It can make them feel safe.  –Lyla

Music is a way to work with sounds with your hands. It forms your brain, helps you to think in a different way. It’s a way speak to people and a way to listen to people.

Without music, I would be a mess. Music is my best friend. It sticks by me through thick and thin, It makes hard times better and good times simply the best. –Maya

Music class always put me in a happy mood. When I looked at my schedule and saw I had music, it changed my feeling about the day. –Shalamar 

Music is an alternate place for kids to exist. You might not be good at math, but could be good in music— and vice-versa. It gives a place to be creative and to learn life skills. It’s a place for kids to be themselves and also bond with their classmates.    -Lucia

As someone with a lot of personal catastrophes and trauma, music became my escape from them. I often spent my day counting minutes until I could be in music. I don’t think most people realize how important the music program is to people like myself and I want more kids like myself to find their escape into music.     –James 

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