Victoria Symphony Adopt-a-School

Project title: Victoria Symphony Adopt-a-School

Participatory Budgeting funding request: $15,000

Organization/Individual: Victoria Symphony / Tina Thompson / Maria Martins

Location: George Jay Elementary School +

What is your project?

VS Adopt-a-School Program will provide the chosen vulnerable school(s) in Victoria with a variety of inspiring educational & entertaining musical instruction, as well as performances at no cost. The program will focus specifically on the schools within the district that do not have the funding or the means for these types of art programs. The benefits of such a program helps facilitate learning other subjects & enhances skills that children inevitably use in other areas. Making music involves more than the voice or fingers playing an instrument. A child learning about music has to tap into multiple skill sets. In children ages 2-9, music has shown to benefit language development. There is also research that has found a causal link between music & spatial intelligence, which means that understanding music can help children visualize various elements that should go together, like they would do when solving a math problem. There is loads of research that highlights the positive effects that a quality music education can have on a child’s future success. How much money you make or what school you attend should not be a deterrent for a child being able to experience the positive benefits of music. The program will have Victoria Symphony musicians provide in-school performances & instruction for students. For many of these students this will be their first experience with professional classical music. Opening up their ears & minds to an expressive, imaginative world, that they otherwise may not ever have the chance to experience.

How does your project benefit the lives of youth in Victoria?

Music in our education system is so important, as it offers so many amazing benefits beyond itself. It has shown to improve Self-esteem as it allows students to try something new & develop confidence as they master playing an instrument. It can give students a way to connect with other people. Children are naturally very social, & it’s important to encourage them to build relationships by providing them with experiences to share with each other. Musical training helps develop language & reasoning. It’s shown to reduce stress & anxiety, lifts mood & boosts health, and some research has even claimed it makes you smarter. It’s a mastery of memorization, when learning & performing, students are constantly using their memory. Students who practice with musical instruments can improve their hand-eye coordination, just like playing sports, they develop their motor skills when playing music too. Emotional development plays a part as well, as students of music can be more emotionally developed, with empathy towards other cultures. They tend to have higher self-esteem & are better at coping with anxiety. Music can be relaxing, helping students fight stress. Kids who study the arts can learn to think creatively. Music can help them solve problems by thinking outside the box & realizing that there may be more than one right answer. Children can learn team work as they learn and share in the creation of music. The benefits are immense.

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