ACME December Newsletter

posted Dec 20, 2012, 8:39 AM by Brad Kohl   [ updated Dec 20, 2012, 8:39 AM ]

Notice the great article about Daniel Bergerson, Breck senior Darius Bieganski and Breck alum Gaia Ramsdell, the original Math Research Superfan!

Daniel's Senior Speech on Music

posted Dec 8, 2012, 8:07 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Dec 8, 2012, 8:07 PM by Brad Kohl ]

A little over a month ago, I delivered my senior speech to the Breck Upper School. Since it is directly inspired by the work that Eden and I have done for the "Assessing the Power of Music" project, I wanted to share it with all of those following our research...

The Power of Music - Daniel Bergerson's Senior Speech

Creating Balance in an Unjust World Conference 2013

posted Nov 30, 2012, 8:04 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Nov 30, 2012, 8:04 AM by Brad Kohl ]

    Recently we were accepted to the Creating Balance in an Unjust World Conference on Math Education and Social justice, which will be taking place in San Fransisco, CA on January 18th-20th. This conference will provide a plethora of experiences, it will allow us to present our findings demonstrating the profound effects of music on children, it will allow us to demonstrate the vast and applicable opportunities represented in the Advanced Mathematics Research Program, and it will lastly allow us to see the social justice activities that are taking place throughout the country. 

first invitation to national conference

posted Nov 2, 2012, 8:06 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Nov 30, 2012, 7:37 AM by Brad Kohl ]

Yesterday, Eden and I received the invitation email from the 24th Annual National Service-Learning Conference, held March 13-16, 2013, in Denver, Colorado. This conference "celebrates service-learning as a force that engages students in their education, builds communities, and strengthens young people and schools." As part of the service-learning showcase, Eden and I can share what we've learned from our experience with Advanced Mathematics Research, Advocates for Community through Musical Excellence, and Learning Through Music. 

The Beginning Stages of Research and Discovery

posted Oct 25, 2012, 5:29 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Oct 29, 2012, 7:38 AM by Brad Kohl ]

(An ACME student with a handcrafted paper violin)

            A new musical program is budding in South Minneapolis, inspired by the phenomenally successful Venezuelan El Sistema system founded to promote a musical community for underprivileged youth. Several passionate young musicians and educators, have made it their mission to begin a similar life changing program for the children of Nellie Stone Johnson Elementary School, an institution known for it’s high truancy, and low standardized test scores.

For the past several weeks we have dashed out of our classes after school and sped down the bustling freeway lanes in order to make it in time for the after school program at Nellie Stone Johnson. This routine has been invaluable as a means to get to know the children, and to found our research with personal classroom experiences. Needless to say, the beginning stages of our research are under way. Our plan is to collect socialization data, including the number of severe disciplinary measures taken and the number of unplanned redirections that occur during the class. We also are planning to film classes once a week, as a means of extracting visual qualitative data. Over time we hope that these clips will show improvements in attention, behavior, and focus.

Although no data analysis has taken place yet, we have still seen inspiring changes in the classroom: the children have stopped running around aimlessly, they are no longer doing elaborate acrobatic headstands on their chairs, and they are acknowledging the teacher. In short all of the students are beginning to respect the musical space and the people within it. This visual improvement seems to predict a very positive and exciting trend, which we will continue to examine in the future. 

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