Every year, Mrs. Gooldrup does an instrument project with fourth-grade students in music classes. This year was a little different. She read the book, Ada’s Violin, and asked students if they thought it was fact or fiction. There were a variety of answers from fact to fiction, historical fiction, and realistic fiction. When students returned to music the following week, they watched a story from the show 60 Minutes which depicts the real-life story of Ada and many other children in Cateura, Paraguay. They are the children of the Recycled Orchestra or Landphilharmonic.
Students see the real events that lead up to children learning to play an instrument created for them out of trash.
Every year, students and Mrs. Gooldrup have a great discussion regarding the living situation the families have, as well as instruments. Students learn the differences between chordophones (instruments with strings), membranophones (instruments with a membrane, like drums), an aerophone (instruments that require air to make sound), and idiophone (instruments that make their own sound, like maracas). Students are given a week or two to go through the recycling bins at their houses to create an instrument to share with the class.
Each year is an amazing discovery to see how creative students are.