To The Parents of the Little Lamb Choir,
How wonderful it is to be welcoming returning and new students to the Little Lamb Choir. I think that most of us thrive better with more routine so I LOVE being back! I am so impressed at how well my young musicians are adapting to a new school year and are embracing so much of what we are already doing. At the time of the writing of this contribution, we have spent a relatively short time together and still there is much to celebrate. Many parents have already shared that their children are singing at home and to and from the schola. The enthusiasm I see and the singing voices I hear put a smile in my heart. Additionally, they are already working very hard to make new found discoveries and are learning a bit more each class about the universal language of music. While a few are adjusting to typical beginning of the year challenges, I know that they will find their way. With all I merely encourage them to try their best. Quite a number of returning students are leaders in the making and their participation is setting excellent examples for our new Little Lambs.
At the Parent Meeting, I had the opportunity to briefly discuss our program with a majority of parents. Though I touched on what we do to prepare for our masses, it may be good to give more of a context and to outline our goals for this year’s masses. When I first arrived at the schola, I observed that many in the Little Lamb Choir struggled with appropriate Mass behavior; it was a COVID year after all. Since then with increased involvement in the sung Mass, they have come to accept greater responsibility and have found a sense of purpose. This year in addition to the Gospel Acclamation, Lamb of God and Ave Maria in Latin - which are now established as part of our Mass Curriculum, we will add the following:
1. The first verse of the Communion Hymn - as reading abilities are still quite limited for many of the Little Lamb Choir, and we rely on memorization to learn much of our music - this is all we can offer up with a certainty. At Communion many of the congregation are not singing for obvious reasons, so we hope to provide some additional support at this point in the mass.
2. We hope to also provide support during the Responsorial Psalm.
3. I am strongly encouraged that the Little Lambs provide other responses by just using their listening skills and musical brains with the Kyrie, Prayers of the Faithful and such.
4. Additionally, I will pull whatever concepts that are most readily accessible to them in other hymns that are chosen.
Certainly, you may assist your child in all of the above. The hymns will be in their binder and so they will have further opportunities to practice much of the above. Singing hymns at home and church will be a great model for your child.
This is going to be a very exciting year. Please know that I feel blessed to be a part of your child's musical journey.
Katheryne Perri Edwards
Katheryne Perri Edwards, a singer and music educator comes to St. John Choir Schola with the following credentials. She graduated from the U of A with distinction with a B.Ed (Music Education) and from the U of C with a M.Ed (Specialization in Early Childhood Music). She taught music for 37 years. The first 13 years were with the Calgary Separate School Board where she received an Excellence in Teaching Award and her last 24 years with the Youth Singers of Calgary where she was the Program Director/Teacher of the Kids & Music Program. This was a four-level music education/preparatory choir experience for Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, Grade I and Grade 2 Students.