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Supporting Music Education at Easton Elementary

Mock 22 AUGUST 1, 2017 – Khara Howe, who teaches music at Easton Elementary School, recently learned that The Mockingbird Foundation – an all-volunteer nonprofit organization created and run by fans of the band Phish – was giving Easton a $1,500 grant to support the school’s music program.

Here’s what she had to say:

Easton 3 “Elayne Best, a board member of the Mockingbird Foundation reached out to me at the end of this past school year. She is a board member for the Mockingbird Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in 1996 by a group of individuals who were fans (or should I say "phans") of the band Phish.”

“Being organized around the love of a musical group, naturally they provide grants for music education programs across the country!  Elayne Best is originally from the Winston-Salem area and, in honor of a particularly memorable Phish concert at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum in 1997, she set out to award a local music program that might need some assistance with funding and support.”  

“I believe she was looking at a few, but ended up going with Easton Elementary. I was beyond ecstatic when I heard that they had chosen Easton Elementary for a "Baker's Dozen" grant of $1,500. As a music educator, there are always things on your wish list, particularly as an eager first-year teacher.”  

Easton 1 “It seems impossible to put into words the experiences I have had in this first year of teaching. It has been harder than I ever imagined and yet, just as rewarding. My students are some of the most incredible people I have ever met. So many of them have faced challenges I can’t even imagine and yet, they walk in my room with joy that privileged adults often cannot muster.”

“I have hoped that every time they enter my room, their loads become a little bit lighter. I have experimented, sometimes successful and sometimes not. I have cried, sometimes for joy and sometimes for sorrow. I have laughed, sometimes at my students and sometimes at myself. I have made it through it all with thankfulness that I get to have this role in my students’ lives.”  

“With the incredible grant, I hope to purchase a few new barred instruments, including more xylophones and glockenspiels.  We have a few, but must rotate in long lines, leaving only a few minutes for each student to experience the instruments.”  

Easton 4 “I was able to attend a training in the Orff-Schulwerk approach to teaching music this summer, and it heavily emphasizes the use of these instruments (among many others). It's all about teaching in their world of play and purchasing these instruments will make this more successful and meaningful for my students.” 

“I am beyond grateful for this amazing opportunity and blessing!  Oh!  And I actually never really listened to Phish, but boy, am I a fan now!”

Khara Howe