Look what came in the mail for Noah, along with a pair of socks!
It reads, “Dear Noah, You knocked our socks off by taking your love of music and turning it into a music program for preschool kids! Awesome work!”
He did just that, in my class. Well, also his class many years ago, as a preschooler. Noah was shy, and he talks about that to this day. He cried at school… a lot. I tried everything I knew to help this timid little boy, but without success. One day I pulled out the autoharp, strummed a few chords, and ta-dah, Noah was immediately captivated. His tears disappeared, and his love of music began to develop.
I love music, too. More importantly, I believe it is absolutely fundamental for preschoolers, on many different levels. Noah is just one example. Over the years he continued with music; drumming being his passion. Last year he asked if he could come into my class every few weeks and bring music to the children. That question was music to my ears (pun intended).
And then, I got to stand back and watch magic happen. His visits quickly became called, ‘Noah Days’ by the children. All I had to say was, “It’s a Noah Day”, and immediately children were eager for not only his music, but for him. He understood children. He had the touch.
Little did I know that Noah’s college essay would include his music in the Aqua Room!
The theme of the essay was based on Muriel Barbery’s 2004 novel, The Elegance of the Hedgehog, finding beauty in life, and the importance of capturing moments of “always within never”. Here is an excerpt from his essay:
I wanted to be able to spread my “always” to others and I was able to achieve this by reaching out to a local preschool and organizing a program where I brought instruments into a class for the children. I played the instrument, let all of them try it, and then talked to them about how it worked. At first, I was skeptical of the idea and was worried that I would be turned down, or that the children would not take interest in me, but I remembered how I felt in their shoes, and how I would have loved having hands on music to get involved with at such a young age. Music was the reason that I came out of my shell, and I wanted to be able to give that to someone. Even if it was one child, I would feel like I succeeded. I could always spot the shy children, the ones who may not have the courage to get involved, clinging to the teacher. Sure enough, I was able to get every kid involved and smiling. To me that was a moment of always within never. In all, I am happy I got to share my talent in the sense that, not only did I get the chance to share music with the children, but I also made lasting connections and served as a mentor for these kids.
One of my goals in college is to continue working with children to provide this support system for them, and help them to come out of their shells. Music shaped my life and I hope to give someone else that opportunity because to me, experiencing new things is the only way to find an “always within never, beauty in this world.”
I am so proud of you, Noah! Thank you for making a difference.