“A musician brings a cello held together with Velcro into fifth-grade classrooms,” writes Carrie Waters in Tuesday’s (11/29) Arizona Republic (Phoenix). “Instead of learning about physics concepts from a textbook, students … explore vibration and pitch as they pluck at the strings. They measure pitch, frequency and vibration by inserting an oscilloscope into the Velcroed cello. This is Mind Over Music, a program that uses music to teach science, math and other skills to children. The Phoenix Symphony launched the program with ASU Preparatory School, a downtown Phoenix charter school, in 2012.” Says Jim Ward, president and CEO of the Phoenix Symphony, “We did a three-year pilot with ASU Preparatory School, and we did a study to measure the program’s success. Our test students scored on average 17 points higher on their science assessments, 13 percent higher on their math assessments, 10 percent higher on their language arts assessments.… The symphony partnered with the Maricopa County Education Service Agency last school year and added three additional schools. This year, the program is in seven schools, primarily Phoenix public schools with large populations of students from low-income households. We hope to expand to 18-20 schools by 2018.”

Posted December 1, 2016

Pictured: Phoenix Symphony Acting Principal Cellist Peter Anderagg gives a lesson on biomes to students at ASU Preparatory School. Photo courtesy Phoenix Symphony