John Graves Simcoe Public School is a low-income school in the Rideau Heights neighbourhood in Kingston, Ontario. Instrumental Music has become quite popular and successful at JG Simcoe Public School over the last few years. Learning musical instruments has been an opportunity they might not receive otherwise. Students are performing quite regularly at school concerts and school assemblies, as well as at upcoming opportunities at local nursing homes to perform for residents.
Most students cannot afford to purchase or rent a musical instrument (which is most students at JG Simcoe PS) If we reach our goal of having 30 instruments by September 2016, that will allow approximately 30 students to have a chance to learn an instrument, as well as using some of these instruments with the school's various music clubs.
There are currently not enough instruments for future intermediate students for the next school year. Students in younger grades are beginning to see, and hear the success of the school band, so with more instruments, that means that more and more students will have a chance at learning to play a musical instrument.
All of these music opportunities at school (which are free of charge to students) have given students a creative and positive way to express themselves and interact with their peers. It has translated to noted improvements in their in-class behaviour during music class and clubs, and in their homeroom as reported by homeroom teachers. Their confidence level has increased and they enjoy practicing during the school day, and some students take their instruments home to practice. Music education is building teamwork through music ensembles, and frequent school and community performances. The students are learning about notation, performance, as well as appropriate language and behavior with different audiences.
Funded by Kingston, ON (May 2016)