Schools filled with the sound of music

NEIGHBORS

April 19, 1995|By PAT BRODOWSKI

Music in Our Schools Month at Hampstead and Spring Garden elementary schools brought parents into classrooms and encouraged students to verbalize about music, perform in a musical or appear on television.

Essay-writing contests were held at both schools. At Hampstead Elementary, students were asked to describe in detail a time or situation when music was important to them.

Winners of the Hampstead essay contest for first- and second-graders were Emilee Cassell, first place; Caroline Lewis, second place; and Stephen Ayd and Bethany Alford, honorable mention. Winners for the third through fifth grades were Megan Rhoten, first place; Beki Finch, second place; and Brent Darsch, honorable mention.

Emilee wrote in her essay, "Music is a special gift we can share with others or enjoy all by ourselves all year through." It's her family tradition to dress as Rudolph, Santa and elves at Christmas and sing carols to relatives and friends.

Megan finds happiness in performing music. She plays the piano and sings. She wrote, "Sometimes I don't feel confident, but when I play a difficult piece well on the piano, I feel great."

The fourth grade also performed a full production musical, "Celebrate You and Me," for the school and PTA.

More than 100 essays were received for the essay contest, "Music Means the World To Me" at Spring Garden Elementary for Music in Our Schools Month.

"There were so many really fine entries, it was difficult to choose winners," said music instructor Idalea K. Rubin. "We're giving away 90 buttons to the first [essays] entered. We're presenting a T-shirt to the winner at each grade level. And we're giving away all the posters and banners to reward many of the others who did a marvelous job."

The entire student body sang in the "World's Largest Concert" on March 22. This activity of the Music Educator's National Conference provides songs for students to be sung around the world on the same day. A tally of Spring Garden students who sang that day will be sent to the Music Educator's National Conference.

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Music wasn't the only school news at Spring Garden on March 22, when the first edition of a monthly student news show, SGE-TV, was aired on closed-circuit television throughout the school.

Anchored by students John Michael Bittman, Laura Erickson and Jaclyn Raver, the news show replaced regular afternoon announcements.

One segment featured third-grade student composer Caitlin Hilbert. She had been inspired to write a country ballad, "Why Does The World Keep Turning," while she reclined in her bathtub. Her solo was accompanied by fellow students from teacher Karen Cigrang's class.

SGE-TV also featured the school's brass choir, which played an excerpt from "The Great Gate of Kiev," and news of the school's participation in the World's Largest Concert.

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Science can be fun when you understand what you're doing. So the staff at Hampstead Elementary school has created Family Science Night from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. April 27.

From reptiles to chemistry, telephones to the rain forests, more than 10 presentations will help families explore current science. Families can choose two topics that evening.

Information: 374-2850.

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If your child attends Spring Garden, he or she might ask if you would like to take a walk around the Chesapeake Bay.

The school's students are walking this month in physical education classes in an attempt to cover a distance equal to the bay's 5,626-mile coastline. The distance each child walks on an outdoor course at the school will be charted on a map of the bay. During the walks, teachers will discuss interesting facts about the bay with the students.

The course also is available to walkers after school. Any distances your child walks during family walks will count, too. And you could ask your child what interesting facts he or she has learned lately as part of the walk around the bay.

When the students have "walked the bay" from shore to shore, the school's PTA will donate $200 to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

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