"The free play of art is the result of mastery. " --Ernst Fischer, The Necessity of Art

"Children are likely to live up to what you believe of them." --Ladybird Johnson

"...a well-trained ear, a well-trained intelligence, a well-trained heart, and a well-trained hand...." --Zoltan Kodaly


Daily Life, 17

Today I watched three different children communicate completely with their facial expressions. Let's see if I can capture it in a verbal photo:

Grade 3. First time this year that we've combined all of the instruments with the ukes, playing a 12 bar blues. Suddenly, we hit the 'groove'--where everyone's playing at the same tempo, with the right chords, and the music takes on a life of its own.

Sasha* glanced up from her uke chords, smiling at me with a face so alight with energy and delight that no lightbulbs would've been needed to light up the room.

Later that morning, in Kindergarten, Michael* put down his maraca eggs midway through a song, and put his head in his hands. When I went over to ask if he was feeling ok, he looked up at me with a face sodden in misery and shook his head, saying quietly, "I don't have a Mom and a Dad anymore. They split up last night."

And after school, when I was walking by the creek which runs through our town, a boy about ten years old was leaning down from the bank, testing the ice with his foot. When his big sister called out to him (from the safety of the side of the road), he shot her a glance full of daredeviltry--and laughed that childhood laugh that's packed with mischief.

So much goes on that's there for the looking.

*Sasha and Michael* are, of course, not these children's real names. (But you knew that already, I'm thinking.)

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