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News, Santa Monica, Education

Westside Neighborhood School Introduces Little Kids Rock Program

Posted Feb. 17, 2014, 8:04 am

Mitch James / Mirror Contributor

Westside Neighborhood School has introduced the Little Kids Rock program into its elementary music curriculum to help revitalize music in the classrooms by providing an innovative program for teachers that includes free music lessons “aimed to engage and excite young students.” 

The Little Kids Rock method of teaching is progressive, involving immersion techniques similar to learning a language. 

Through the program, students are encouraged to learn by playing instruments and getting a truly hands-on experience. 

Thanks to generous funding from WNS families for new child-sized acoustic guitars, what started out as a dream for Westside Neighborhood School music teacher Paul Cummings, is now a reality.

At WNS, the Little Kids Rock program will be taught to fourth grade students.

Though the students will start out learning on the new acoustic guitars, “the Little Kids rock program encompasses more than just guitars. We will study keyboards in our computer lab, students will gain some familiarity with our digital drum set, and some students will play bass,” says Cummings. 

Cummings is particularly eager to see what students will start creating as they become more familiar with the instruments. 

“Once the students learn some chords, a part of their practice will include making up their own patterns and songs," he said. "We will be studying some classic pop songs, a few folk songs, and even a couple of songs you might hear on the radio.”

Head of School Brad Zacuto said he was excited about this new addition to the curriculum. 

“We are thrilled to add this new program to our elementary music curriculum," Zacuto said. "The style of learning that Little Kids Rock promotes blends perfectly with our active learning philosophy at WNS as well as our emphasis on the arts in our curriculum.”

With the Little Kids Rock program being implemented, students, parents, and faculty are excited about the potential this brings to all WNS students. 

It will allow students more opportunities to compose and showcase their creativity in new and unique ways.

Westside Neighborhood School is located at 5401 Beethoven Street, Los Angeles, CA 90066.

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