Show Menu Union Public Schools Logo

Sounds for Success

Early Childhood Education Center Home Page

The Sounds for Success program is a program offered at Union Public Schools’ Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center involving the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra. Through Sounds for Success, TSO musicians visit the school once each week to engage children in learning through music.

The Early Childhood Center targets children as young as 3 from low-income families. Those children are considered more at risk of falling behind academically than their peers.

"I am so convinced that we've got to engage children and families early," said Erv Janssen, a retired child psychiatrist and member of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra board. "Without a community coming together in a collaborative process, kids won't make it."

Four organizations - Union Public Schools, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, the Community Action Project of Tulsa County and Hilti Inc. - worked to bring Sounds for Success to the school. It is based on a tested model developed in Venezuela.

 


 

'Sounds for Success' at Early Childhood Center

Originally posted January 31, 2013

http://vimeo.com/58584598

Union Schools - Oklahoma

Susie Brown, a bassoonist with the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, plays her flute for students at the Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center on Wednesday. Members of the orchestra play music for children and set up stations where the kids can play music, draw music notes and dance during weekly visits to the school. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World


Tulsa Symphony Orchestra musicians take musical play to preschoolers

BY KIM ARCHER Tulsa World Staff Writer
(Reprinted with Permission. This is not an endorsement.)

Four-year-old Jada Jackson whirled and twirled to the music as two Tulsa Symphony Orchestra musicians played "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" on the flute and oboe.

Her classmates at Union's Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center accompanied the duet by tapping wooden sticks on makeshift drums of upside-down ice trays.

As she danced, Jada gleefully sang every word - loudly.

"Our mission is just to bring beauty into children's lives," said the school's principal, Lynn McClure. "So if they've got bad things going on, those can just float away with the music."

The early childhood center targets children as young as 3 from low-income families. Those children are considered more at risk of falling behind academically than their peers.

Through the school's Sounds for Success program, Tulsa Symphony Orchestra musicians visit the school once each week to engage children in learning through music.

"I am so convinced that we've got to engage children and families early," said Erv Janssen, a retired child psychiatrist and member of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra board. "Without a community coming together in a collaborative process, kids won't make it."

Four organizations - Union Public Schools, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, the Community Action Project of Tulsa County and Hilti Inc. - worked to bring Sounds for Success to the school. It is based on a tested model developed in Venezuela.

"We're seriously looking at Kendall-Whittier Elementary now," Janssen said, noting the program's success at Rosa Parks.

Longtime Tulsa Symphony Orchestra musician Susie Brown said she cherishes the time she spends with Rosa Parks students.

"It's been great for us," she said of herself and fellow musician Sarah Evans. "We've learned as much as the kids have. It's nice to get to see such growth. It's organic."

Brown plays the bassoon in the orchestra but brings her flute to Rosa Parks. Evans plays the oboe.

"We're sort of like the parents when they sneak spinach in smoothies and say: 'Drink this. It's good,' " Brown said. "We try to sneak in different elements of music."

At first, the children just listened to the music, but now they are engaged in it, she said. They are even learning how to write and read music notes.

On Wednesday, Jada and other children started filling a large music staff on paper with notes as the instrumentalists played the ABC song.

Jada's mother, Shonta Jackson, said her family is active in the music program at their church. Her husband, Jerrell Jackson, is a pianist, and she is a vocalist.

The pair are also part of the Taste of Africa Dance Co., where he plays the djembe, a West African drum, and she dances.

Although Jada's life is infused with music, many of her classmates don't have that type of exposure.

"Music is powerful," Jerrell Jackson said. "It stimulates memory. It creates emotions. It's very important."

Using music in child development promotes:

  • Self-esteem
  • Self-confidence
  • Self-image
  • Eye, ear and hand development
  • A sense of responsibility to others
  • Strong interpersonal and interactive relationships
  • Brain development through growth and integration of neural pathways that no other activity can provide
  • Academic skills that lay the groundwork for life-long growth potential
  • Impulse control
  • Decision-making skills

Source: Tulsa Symphony Orchestra Education Committee

Union Schools - Oklahoma


Marilyn Wu, 4, a student at the Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center, dances in the hallway at the school while musicians Sarah Evans (partially hidden) and Susie Brown (left), members of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, play music Wednesday. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World

Union Schools - Oklahoma


Madison Black, 3, a student at Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center, smiles Wednesday as she helps Susie Brown, a member of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, play her flute at the school. Members of the orchestra play music for children and set up stations where the kids can play music, draw their own notes or dance during their weekly visit to Rosa Parks. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World

Union Schools - Oklahoma


Susie Brown (left) and Sarah Evans, both Tulsa Symphony Orchestra members, listen as 4-year-old Jada Jackson, a student at Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center, sings a song Wednesday. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World