Music teacher gets extra creative during pandemic

Music teacher gets extra creative during pandemic

WYNNE, Ark. (KAIT) - One Cross County music teacher got a little creative to teach a new avenue of music so that students can still have class safely while adapting to the pandemic.

Music Teacher Teresa Cantrell with Wynne Primary School has been teaching her students how to play hand chimes.

Cantrell said she had to begin brainstorming this summer. She knew the children would not be able to sing because of the way COVID-19 spreads.

Cantrell added that she’s used to getting creative, but 2020 has made her think outside of the box.

“We’ve had to get creative about how the kids can express themselves musically without singing, and my students know that I love to sing,” Cantrell said. “It’s my favorite thing to do, and it’s been a tough year not being able to do that, but the hand chimes have brought us an element of joy that we didn’t have before.”

Second-grader Hayden Simon said that she had a blast learning a new instrument.

“Because when you sing, you can have stuff out of your mask, your breathing can come out of your mask, and when you’re playing an instrument, you don’t talk or anything like that,” said Simon.

A Donors Choose grant and the generosity of over 22 donors across the state helped supply Cantrell with the instruments to teach her students.

The hand chimes cost over $3,500, and Cantrell says it’s all worth it because music education is essential.

“The beauty of music education is every child can be successful. It does not matter what their skills, abilities, or gifts are,” Cantrell said. “We can find ways to help every kid experience success and have fun and have joy.”

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