When our K1 and K2 students begin their musical journey in our program, they spend their first three months learning about the various instruments of the string orchestra, developing general music skills, and building papier-mâché instruments as they become an orchestral family. This program is possible thanks to the support of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Over the past month, students from the Beaver Country Day School (BCDS) in Brookline, MA have been investing their energy in improving the JQOP Paper Orchestra program. With the help of BCDS's amazing team of teachers from their Hiatt Center for Civic Engagement and guidance from the JQOP Mozart team and executive director, these 6th- and 7th-grade students will use a laser to create paper instruments for JQOP kindergarten students.
The goal of the Paper Orchestra Program (a.k.a. PIP) is for BCDS students to gain an understanding of the goals and needs of the JQOP community and use their own knowledge and experience with string instruments to strengthen the paper instrument design and simplify the assembly process. Students are asked to exemplify the El Sistema core values of teamwork, responsibility and mutual respect as they work in groups to brainstorm, prototype and test their ideas. This project ultimately leads to a stronger understanding of their own instruments, R+D (research and development) tools and JQOP.