A New Solution to Summers and the Education Gap

I recently read a book called Outliers by Malcom Gladwell that highlights different stories with the idea being that success comes more from society and community. One of the chapters in the book briefly discusses an educational program called “Knowledge Is Power Program” also known as KIPP.

As I dug a little deeper into this program I found a close relation to music lessons and KIPP. In the book, Gladwell discuss the achievement gaps between students of low, medium, and high income families. After a research team decided to administer aptitude tests in June and August, they found results that were surprising. Low income students actually learn more than high income students, but high income students are given the opportunity to continue learning over the summer. These activities range from summer camp, special classes, and music lessons! This research determined that the achievement gap issue is not necessarily due to socioeconomic or lack of funding in schools, but the amount of time the students are engaging in educational activities over the summer.

KIPP seeks to close the education gap in kids not through more rigorous classes, but through providing more time to learn! They continue classes through July, and even do classes on Saturdays.

Now we’re not here to tell you we want to put your kids through rigorous music lessons or schooling, but more explain to you the importance of keeping them in actives over the summer. As parents, we generally feel the need to make summers super relaxing, fun, and non-educational. And while I do think that is important, I think activating your child’s mind over the summer with educational activities and programs is even more important.

So this year, I want to challenge all of our students and parents with this:

Make this summer an educational one to never forget. We know families take off music lessons and activities over the summer to give their kids a break, but is a break what’s best? You know your kids better than I do, but I know I am going to have my daughter in programs this summer to keep her engaged, learning, and even out of my hair at points! Maybe this is not the year to withdraw for the summer, but to keep them engaged in music and witness exponential growth.

I love education. I love that we get to teach kids math, science, english, history, and so much more through the outlet of one subject: Music. We love that you have chosen to do music lessons with us, and we are always are striving to give your kids excellence. We’re committed to closing the education gap in both low, middle, and high income families and we are committing to serve your family and the community! Thanks for choosing Spark School of Music for music lessons!

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