The Acadiana Symphony Orchestra & Conservatory of Music is hoping to expand its Do-Re-ME! Program after its pilot generated record results.
Do-Re-ME! is a comprehensive music education course for pre-K and kindergarten students that assists in school readiness and reading. Students take a 30-minute class each week, developed by symphony faculty members, that is structured around the Louisiana academic comprehensive curriculum and Common Core requirements.
The program’s goal was to see a 20 to 40 percent increase in preparedness test scores of Lafayette and Acadia Parish students.
It yielded a 60 percent improvement in academic achievement, a 50 percent improvement in social behavior and a 40 percent improvement in parental involvement with students in the pilot program.
Results were measured by comparing students’ school test scores at the beginning of the year to their scores at the end of the year, Rebecca Doucet, ASO’s marketing director, said.
The pilot was launched last fall and uses an arts integration approach that teaches music and boosts instruction of academic subjects. Students participate in many hands-on activities such as live musical performances, listening activities and games.
The Do-Re-ME! objective is to help all students meet or exceed state readiness testing in reading comprehension and verbal memory, listening skills, vocabulary, phonological and phonemic awareness, and writing and print awareness.
The curriculum focuses on the impact music and musical instruction can have on early academic development for young children.
The pilot was started at Truman Early Childhood Education Center in Lafayette Parish and has expanded to five Acadia Parish schools. The curriculum was created in-house by ASO’s more than 20 instructors.
“We’re not teaching music, we’re using music as a vehicle to teach basic academic skills,” Doucet said.
She said this program helps children develop motor skills and is increasing in popularity.
“The demand is there, and we hope to be able to meet the demand,” Doucet said. “We all want our young people to succeed, to thrive.”
“We’re really looking forward to continuing and learning as we go,” she added.
BY Anastasia Semien
The Advertiser, Dec. 4, 2013
Photo Caption: The Acadiana Symphony Orchestra & Conservatory of Music is hoping to expand its Do-Re-ME! Program, a music education course for pre-K and kindergarten students. / Submitted photo