RELEASED: Violin lessons to start again in Washington public schools

Mark Mulligan / The Herald Emma Fontenot plucks her violin during her first lesson at Little Cedars Elementary School in Snohomish on Wednesday afternoon.

We are all concerned of the state of music education in the United States, regardless of the countless studies supporting the benefits of music instruction for children. It seems, though, that in the last few years there has been in upward trend of new music programs silently popping up all over North America. This is great news – especially for the children affected. In light of this, a wonderful story out of Snohomish, WA surfaced today regarding music lessons resuming for children there.

Gale Fiege of HeraldNET of Everrett, Wa reported that violin lessons are now part of Snohomish First Presbyterian’s Kaleidoscope Academy. The church has five instructors who offer 102 different class times in 19 different musical instruments and voice lessons for children and adults, Lewis said. Church doctrine is not part of the instruction.

Ann Lewis, Paster at First Presbyterian said, “We have a love of the arts,” “We have had a dream to use our resources to offer community classes, which may later include courses such as personal finance, cooking and parenting. We decided to start with music.”

Lewis went on to say that they have had an enthusiastic response, stating “we even have students on waiting lists for violin classes.” Continuing,”It seems as though this is God’s timing. We are thankful that the church is reflecting God’s love and that we have been able to organize this.”

The time is now to take action in your local community to impact the children that live in it. They will cherish the memories that are made through music instruction, and the interaction they receive by participating in music with their peers. As we can see in this story it takes very little to get something special up and running. In Snohomish they understood the immense value music lessons brought to the children of their community – they acted. We must all have this same strife, that we may too positively impact a the lives of children in our community.

Rosalie Plante, 7, a second-grader at Little Cedars Elementary School, wore a big grin as she left school following her first violin lesson Wednesday.

“It was really fun and exciting,” Rosalie said. “The teacher is nice and I like my new violin.”

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