By: Joshua Gras, Follow South Jersey Higher Education Intern
GLASSBORO, N.J. — Rowan Community Music School unveiled its new slate of programs for the upcoming year during a virtual event. New classes will benefit learners of all ages from middle schoolers to adults.
Music educators have room to benefit from RCMS’s new series of seminars, which aims to help educators find new ways to teach. The Music Therapy classes led by Lynn Gumert, for example, can teach lessons and provide valuable input to students of all ages. Music Therapy is meant to improve traits such as motor skills, speech, confidence, and even attention span.
For the younger demographics specifically, a new set of classes dedicated to music theory and songwriting teaches students about the fundamentals of music and how to read it. Two new student ensembles – the Rowan Youth Jazz Orchestra and the Rowan Youth Wind Ensemble – are joining the school, as well. The school’s total ensemble count is now up to five, giving even more opportunities for students to expand their horizons
Elizabeth Guerriero, Director of the Community Music School & Educational Partnerships, has a strong belief in the program.
“Music and music education for all students is a fundamental right,” she said.
Guerriero also seems optimistic about at the program’s current progress and hopes that, as the country emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the courses offered by the school will be well-rounded and allow students the creative release they’ve been lacking. Dr. Hayden Denesha, the Artistic Director of the Rowan Youth Orchestra, tends to agree with this sentiment.
“Every student should have access to and study music because participation in music not only helps students study a wonderful art form, it helps them find their own method of creativity through a great outlet,” Dr. Denesha said.
Learning how to play music helps students become “better people, better citizens and, through that, better leaders,” according to Dr. Denesha.
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This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.