i have a question...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Music Explores, vol. II

Today was one of those days in NYC where you walk outside and feel dirty right away because the humidity is already bad. And the streets smell like garbage. I was kind of jet-lagged, after sleeping in until 10 and then it taking almost an hour and a half to get uptown for the second half of my day at work.

After a strange afternoon of running around, catching up on work emails, a lab meeting, and not being able to use my work computer because it was being updated, I headed to the Lower East Side for another night of volunteering. The game plan was to teach the kids solfege and the scale, which seemed slightly arbitrary to me, especially since it included singing Do Re Mi, from the Sound of Music, with them. But whatever. When I become a Team Leader, I can do things differently. (I have an interview next Friday, just for that.)

I found out tonight that this project is linked up with shelter kids. That these kids actually live in the housing development where we meet. Tyshawn was already there when I got there. He seemed slightly subdued at the beginning of the evening, but maybe that's because he was the lone kid in a room of female volunteers for the first part of the night. It was just two kids for about 20 minutes and then...they kept flooding in.

Anyway, I seem to have a knack for working with them after all. I kept Tyshawn and another little boy, Keith, focused and gave them encouragement that they could memorize the scale, backwards and forwards. Keith sat down next to me and nearly shouted that he wanted me to be the one to help him. Tyshawn was just as enthusiastic. Our assigned line of Do Re Mi was "Ray, a drop of golden sun," and the boys screamed it each time it was our turn to sing. By the end of the night, I got big hugs goodbye.

I couldn't help but think that these are the kind of kids that don't really get much of a chance to be kids. And yet, here they were, singing a Broadway song and begging for cookies.

And on the train ride home, I saw a little boy singing to himself, "T makes the sound t, t, t. Everybody sing it, t, t, t." Kids are magical.


Anonymous said...

Oh my god are they ever.

Rachiewrites said...

I can't wait to hear how your interview for Team Leader goes, and what projects you will plan. I agree about kids; oh, how lovely and innocent they are!