One of the many things I love about Eastern Christian is the commitment to giving students opportunities to pursue their gifts. Beginning in 2nd grade, students in the elementary school, are given the choice to participate in beginning violin group lessons. The lessons occur during the school day, and lead into a robust middle school and high school orchestra, should the students continue to pursue their love of stringed instruments.
Second graders are introduced to the violin and its parts, and play simple songs using a modified Suzuki Method such as “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” and its variations (the most memorable being “Mississippi Hot Dog”). Students in third and fourth grade then build on what they have previously learned and grow significantly in their musical ability. Because students are given a choice to participate, they enjoy music very much and are committed to practicing outside of school hours as additional homework.
Mrs. Melissa Macy has lead the elementary school violin for the last two years, and is an accomplished violinist. It is evident in her teaching how much she loves the children and the instrument. Students are able to catch her contagious love for music and it is put on display during the Violin Chapel towards the end of the year. This year’s Violin Chapel was on Tuesday, May 28, and serves as a violin recital for family and friends to hear the hard work the students have put in all year.
In this year’s Violin Chapel, the 4th graders lead by sharing two of the songs they worked on. Third grade then played two of their songs, followed by second grade playing theirs. They closed chapel with playing “Ode to Joy” by Ludwig van Beethoven as a whole group. Third graders played the melody while 2nd and 4th graders played the harmony, creating a beautiful, worshipful closing to a wonderful year of violin.
Violin Chapel was a wonderful time of showcasing the talent of our elementary students, as well as Eastern Christian’s commitment to music education.