Young Artist in Residency Programs at Hurlock and Maple

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CAMBRIDGE — Students and staff at Maple and Hurlock Elementary Schools experienced the incredible energy and talent of Max Bent, beatboxing artist, last week. “Mr. Max” began the week with an assembly at each school. He worked each day at both Maple and Hurlock, providing lessons in Katie Spedden’s and Myesha Daniel’s second grade classrooms at Maple and in Chandra Knox’s, Katie Peer’s and Kathy Willoughby’s second grade classrooms at Hurlock.

Lessons were constructed based upon music, rhythm, and the connection with mathematics. Beatboxing is a vocal art form that combines human produced beats and other vocalizations. The music provides a tool for understanding math concepts like adding and subtracting fractions, sequencing, graphing, etc. Teachers at both schools were provided with an opportunity to attend a professional development session to learn how to integrate the concepts into their lessons. The week culminated with a concluding activity for the participants at each school so that they could demonstrate the concepts they learned. Students enjoyed demonstrating their own versions of beatboxing accompanied by Mr. Max in an “open mic” forum.

The program was designed to provide enrichment and primary talent development at each of the schools. Max Bent also integrated science concepts such as the need for air in order to create sound, lessons in perseverance and working hard to achieve a goal, and trying your best even when it is not perfect. The residencies were supported by Young Audiences of Maryland/Arts for Learning in Baltimore and partially funded with grants from the Dorchester Center for the Arts, Maryland State Arts Council, and the George B. Todd Foundation.

Heather Powell, school counselor at Hurlock and Natalie Taylor, math coach at Maple served as site coordinators for the events. For more information please contact Donna Greenleaf, coordinator of Gifted and Talented Programs, Dorchester County Public Schools, 410-228-4747.

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