With the easing of some pandemic restrictions, middle school students in Choir and Music Explorations classes recently came together to sing, “America,” “Hawai`i Ponoʻī” and “Hawaiian Doxology.”
“We are filled with gratitude for the opportunity to sing and make music safely again, after not being able to do so for nearly 18 months,” said Alicia Scanlan, K – 12 Music Department Head (Junior School). “We feel incredibly blessed to work with these amazing young people and look forward to their continued growth this year.”
A team of five faculty – Joanna Habermann, Lauren Chang ’01 Williams, John Roberts, Marlene Patton and Scanlan – conceptualized the curriculum for the grades 6 – 8 classes to build a strong choral and music explorations community and incorporate Social, Emotional and Ethical Learning. For example, students came together to sing “America” around the flagpole as part of a reflection on 9/11. They also gathered at the Lily Pond to sing the “Hawaiian Doxology” after completing a lesson on November’s Chapel theme of haʻahaʻa (humility) and in the spirit of gratitude for Thanksgiving.
“We wanted to place a strong emphasis on singing in all of our classes,” Scanlan said, adding that in the past, music exploration classes didn’t do a lot of singing. “This year, all of our choir and music explorations classes sing and have sung together, learning how to support their voices correctly, expand their range, use a beautiful tone, and even sing in harmony.”