Students under the music direction of West Park’s music teacher Lisa Steckel will be enabled to make music actively throughout their lives. In a world so full of be-alone activities, playing together musically is an ideal medium in which the children in school music classes and families and friends can grow together.
The music program at West Park Elementary School has many elements which, combined, are intended to accomplish many things, not the least of which is to keep the sense of wonder alive.Through the art of music-making, children create, play games, play instruments, move and dance, improvise, compose, listen, and perform. The music used in the classroom is based on the children’s own heritage with a combination of folk and composed music.
The singing voice is our primary instrument in the music room. All students can sing and be successful. Using the teachings of Zoltan Kodaly, rhythm symbols are utilized and hand signs to show tonal relationships. The goal is for students to achieve mastery of musical skill such as musical reading and writing, singing and part-singing.
Musical experiences are also based upon the ideas of Carl Orff; students “experience first, then intellectualize”. Students gain an understanding of concepts and skills through connecting with the music by experiencing it on all levels. The ideal music for children is “never alone, but connected with movement, dance, and speech—not to be listened to, meaningful only in active participation.”
Ms. Steckel’s philosophy includes a music education for the whole person. It is essentially an active music experiential approach. Creativity is encouraged through the student’s natural responses to music.