Hearing the sound of bells at Riverview
Walking down the halls of Riverview Elementary School, you may hear something a little different this year. Ms. Sagarsee, Riverview’s music teacher, has orchestrated the start of a 5th grade Bell Choir.
Creating a Bell Choir is something Ms. Sagarsee has always wanted to do. There were some obstacles to overcome. In the past, her 6th graders have played bells, but considering the class size and the limited numbers of bells, students sometimes had to sit out because there were not enough to go around. Ms. Sagarsee recognized the 6th graders had opportunities to play in the band at the middle schools and 4th graders get to play recorders, so she chose to focus her efforts on 5th grade students. This year, the entire 5th grade at Riverview will have an opportunity to be part of the Bell Choir.
The 5th grade students will participate daily on a six week rotation. Some of the students began the program skeptical they would enjoy it, but Ms. Sagarsee has not had a student yet who doesn’t enjoy playing bells. Ms. Sagarsee explains it takes concentration and focus, but when the students understand they are playing as part of a group, and each person’s part is individual and important, they feel they are necessary and rise to the challenge. The students are excited to learn about the different bells, and how each one may need a different technique to play.
Only in the first year, they have already had opportunities to perform at assemblies and grandparents day. The current group of 5th graders will be participating in the Riverview spring 4th-6th grade program. In the future, Ms. Sagarsee hopes to have a group stay with her throughout the year, and consider performances outside of the school.
The Bell Choir gives the students something special to look forward to at the end of the day and also makes the entire staff at Riverview Elementary smile.