Learning about the banjo

Linden Street fifth grade students were treated to a banjo demonstration by Alycia Sandmeier, left, and music teacher Marilyn Speranza.

Talk about a hands-on lesson. Fifth graders at Linden Street School were treated to a special musical performance which would kick-start a science and math project.

Banjo player Alycia Sandmeier was joined by Linden music teacher, Marilyn Speranza, who played the guitar.

“The musical duo introduced students to the banjo to prepare them” for an upcoming project.

The concert helped build excitement for a class project. Students learned about the instrument’s history and how it sounds. Shortly after, music students at the school began building their own cardboard box banjos, a project that has gone on for several years at Linden.

This isn’t just an arts and crafts project. Student will learn to play songs on their cardboard banjos.

“The project connects the fifth grade science curriculum to music, with a focus on how sound is made and perceived,” according to a press release. “Students use their completed cardboard box banjos to play tunes they have learned in music class.”

During Sandmeier’s presentation, the students heard “classic bluegrass tunes” and learned about the history of the banjo.

“Sandmeier’s performance served as the perfect kick-off for the cardboard box project,” according to the release, “sparking student interest in the instrument.”