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School of the Week: Hunt Elementary

Music teacher Cortney Jackson finds innovative ways to keep his students engaged without using instruments

PEACH COUNTY, Ga. — Hunt Elementary students can't use the school's instruments because of COVID-19 safety guidelines, but Jancarlos Vargas still looks forward to music class every day

"It feels good and it's good to be on drums, playing music," Vargas said.

His teacher, Cortney Jackson, found innovative ways to keep the music flowing.

"Even if we can't use the instruments that are here, we can still use a chair. We can still use the floor, we can still use our hands, so I'm the kind of a teacher...if I don't have anything, if I don't have none of these instruments, I would still be able to actually do music and have fun," Jackson said.

"My favorite part about it is drumming," Vargas said.

Jackson uses apps and websites on his smart board to teach notes, make songs and play videos for students to dance along to.

"You can actually create songs on there and you can actually put your voice in there too and make an actual song in the software and download it for free," Jackson said.

Even without instruments, Jackson says music uplifts his students.

"When you think about this time of COVID-19, we're thinking about scared, the kids are nervous, they're frightened. They're babies, you know what I mean, and the thing is I'm giving them a little bit more excitement like, 'Oh my gosh, it's back almost like regular,' you know what I mean," said Jackson.

"He's a good music teacher and he always turns off his lights cause I like the dark," Vargas said.

Jackson says the rhythm sticks they use are easy to sanitize and he makes sure to wipe down the smart board after each use.

He's always on the look out for free apps and websites to engage his students.


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