March is National Music in Our Schools Month (MIOS), a time to celebrate the importance of music education in our schools and to recognize the incredible dedication of our music teachers!Teacher giving music lessons at school
This event was established by the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) more than 30 years ago, and its goal is to raise awareness for the importance of music education for all children. This year’s theme is “music is all of us”, with an aim to highlight how music is everywhere in our lives and has a unique way of bringing us together and giving everyone a place to belong. You can find out more on their website: https://nafme.org/programs/miosm/
This month is the perfect opportunity to acknowledge the amazing music teachers in our schools and their endless dedication to teaching music to our children. Over the years, our public schools have spent time and resources growing music programs including: music rooms, chorus, band programs in middle and high schools, purchasing of instruments and supplies, auditoriums, and forming a team of certified, encouraging, and enthusiastic music educators. We are especially thankful for our earlier music teachers who were the pioneers of music education and made sure that the children had the opportunity to learn, listen, and experience music. We wouldn’t be where we are today without them.
One of the highlights of this month is National Marching Band Day on March 4th, which celebrates the “marching arts” like drum corps. Marching bands are a much-loved tradition, first appearing in the 1800s and playing in many different establishments from the Broadway stage to football stadiums and smaller auditoriums. Marching bands perform at most every football game, plus other events throughout the year like graduations, other sporting events, and district level competitions. They represent the “music is all of us” theme well as they play a significant role in important events in our community, boosting morale and giving our students the chance to come together in strength and unity through music.
If marching and sporting events are not your style, chorus is another great way to become involved in music. Group singing encourages socialization, teamwork, presentation skills, and public speaking skills. If we can learn to sing in front of people, giving a speech seems so much easier. With singing, students can express emotion, creativity, and confidence, and build a strong bond with the singing group.
Even just attending these events as supportive audience members makes a massive difference. After all, we need the audience to encourage the students/music teachers and enjoy their performance!
This month, I encourage our parents, guardians, and community members to give music teachers a card, note, gift, handshake, or word of appreciation. Let them know how they make a positive difference in the lives of students with their hard work both during school hours and on weekends and breaks. We all need each other to keep the arts alive in our schools.
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