- Meridian Ranch Elementary School
Chimes in the Hall
Maybe a little early, but Christmas music could be heard in the halls of Remington Elementary School before the Thanksgiving Break.
The classic notes of “Jingle Bells” rang through the building.
Click here for the sounds of the class on Facebook: https://fb.watch/h4SPneaztX/
In November, students representing each zone practiced the holiday favorite in a weekly chimes class. Ingrid Daniel, the gifted facilitator at RES, hosted the class for third to fifth grade gifted students as part of D49’s Gifted Education program.
“I picked Christmas music for this first experience with chimes not only because many people associate bells and chimes with Christmas music, but also because I wanted songs that the students already knew,” Daniel said. “That way, we didn't have to work on learning how the song was supposed to go. They already knew how it was supposed to sound, and all they had to do was make it sound that way.”
Prior to enrolling, most of these students had minimal or no exposure to musical instruments.. With chimes, a simple motion of the arm and wrist creates a delightful musical note.
“They caught onto the chimes very quickly,” Daniel said. “By the end of the first rehearsal they were already playing “Jingle Bells” fairly well.”
The simplicity of the chime makes it a great beginner instrument.
“Chimes are a good introductory instrument because you can learn how to play them quickly,” Daniel said. “ You don't have to have a lot of complicated techniques to make them sound good, and they are relatively cheap. I was able to borrow these chimes from the Handbell Musicians of America, through their loan program.”
Music is a great learning tool.
“Music engages so many different ways of learning,” Daniel said. “Visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning is taking place all at the same time.”
“Many people believe that students can only be gifted academically, but there are many areas of giftedness including creativity and music,” said Diane Neff, D49 coordinator of gifted education. “We are hoping that this class helps the students attending to enhance those areas. And as we all know, music goes hand in hand with mathematics.”
“Since students can be gifted in many areas, we wanted to offer a class that would resonate with those who are gifted in many different areas,” Daniel said. “From the response that we got, I would say that we succeeded.”
“The Gifted Department will be offering several different types of classes, from science experiments, to math projects, and we're even trying to get a balloon class going in the spring. We believe that offering these classes to students in every zone across the district will help to give all of our gifted population opportunities for enrichment,” Neff said.