QSI Middle School Music: Exciting Times With Chris Haigh & Grant Souder
If you are a Middle School student at Quality School International in Shekou and your schedule tells you to head over to Mr. Souder or Mr. Haigh’s classroom, there will most likely run a little jolt of excitement through your veins. Chris Haigh and Grant Souder are both Middle School Music teachers at QSI Shekou. Mr. Souder is in charge of General Music and Mr. Haigh teaches Band Class.
‘The students get the choice in which of the two classes they would like to enroll. We do very different things in both classes yet it is music all the same.’ Chris explains. ‘We are fortunate to have two music teachers here and that we are able to split the Music Department into two classes. Giving students the choice in how they would like to study music makes them so much more interested.’ Grant continues.
General Music touches upon a very broad spectrum of things. ‘In my class we do a lot of singing, dancing, reading music and learning how to play instruments. We also do a lot of Music Tech. The school acquired iPads that we use in class so that we not only teach the students music in a physical form but also through programs such as Garage Band. We notice that our students really enjoy this mixture and see how refreshing it is. It provides the opportunity to explore the curriculum in a fun, creative way.’ Grant explains.
Chris Haigh’s Band Class is quite new to QSI. Chris: ‘When I came to QSI around three years ago, there was a smaller band program for after school. When I joined we made it the option to take Band Class during the day and it really got big from then on. In those days we had around 10 to 12 kids in the band, today there around 150 to 200 students participating in Band Class. I’m still in charge of two bands after school and Grant leads the after school strings group. We were able to really expand the program over the last few years, which is great!’
Grant: ‘We encourage the students to have their own instruments. Independent study is such an important part of becoming a musician and we really have to coach the students with this.’ Chris: ‘The Music Department does have some great instruments for the students. We have a drum set, xylophones, bells, a tuba, a bass clarinet, an alto clarinet and a baritone. There are even more instruments coming in next year as the department keeps growing.’
For more information visit: http://shekou.qsischool.org/