Saturday, May 2, 2020

Coming Together

Quick blog tonight - I've pondered what I want to write all day, and have finally settled on a topic that has made me smile over the past couple of weeks: community.

We are working on some amazing initiatives in my district to bring people together. Two that I am heading up are the art & music initiatives.

We have one week left in "The HeART of Our Community," where people are submitting a photograph of something they've created that is either in the shape of a heart or includes a heart in it. We've seen over 200 responses come in so far, full of heart shapes and anatomical hearts, beads, chalk, and paint, nature and found objects, and so much more! I'm also excited to see that they are coming from 36 different schools and every grade level from PK-12th grade (and staff) is represented. Each new picture makes me smile, and I love reading the artist statements.

A recent submission included a photograph, and the statement said that it was made to honor the student's grandparent who had recently passed away. I was struck by how meaningful some of this artwork is to the students - and I hope that the act of creating brought a small measure of healing. I can't wait until we put the final product together to see a beautiful compilation of our community's creative talents!

Meanwhile, we have been making preparation for a collaborative song, where anyone can submit a video of themselves singing along, and we will mix it all together into something amazing (*fingers crossed*)! This has taken SO much prep work, and just this week, we started having submissions coming in from teachers playing on the instrumental accompaniment track. It's so much fun to see our teachers as musicians, which we don't see often enough, and to feel the synergy as the parts begin to come together. I sure miss being around people right now, but listening to recordings of us all playing together makes it almost feel like we are around each other.

In other music news, a friend and I have been recording socially distanced duets together (aka we both record ourselves playing and then mix the videos). It has been such a blessing and a highlight to do something that we love - making music - and take a break from both work and all of the news about the virus.

Coming together while being apart is powerful. How are you coming together with others?

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