Languages: English, French
We, Holly Arntzen and Kevin Wright, have been giving Voices of Nature school music programs for the past 13 years. We are songwriters, singers and performers with a lifetime of experience in music - and specifically working with tens of thousands of young people. We have created a library of eco-songs and award-winning educator's handbooks that help teachers use music in the classroom for environmental education. We do songwriting workshops with single classrooms, and artist in residence programs with entire schools.
Watching Holly and Kevin work with 200 students at a practice is an awesome experience. Within minutes they have all of the students eating out of their hand, creating, revising, risking and loving every moment of it. They make a fantastic team. Holly calmly demands that the students reach for the best quality performance possible, while Kevin drives them up into an insane level of enthusiasm. Brian Pritchard, Grade 3/4 Teacher, Kispiox Elementary
It's been two weeks since you left our school and your beautiful songs are still ringing in our hallways. WOW! What a tremendous impact your Voices of Nature program has made on our students, both in song and in their thinking. I've heard more mature, thought-evoking conversations in the past three weeks than I've heard in my entire teaching career. Katherine Key, Music Specialist, Watson Road Elementary
This program has met so many of our school's goals and expectations. The students were very engaged in learning their traditional language, singing and playing instruments in front of a large audience. The parents and guardians came up to me and still to this day, speak about their child singing the songs from the concert. The overall project was incredibly successful for our parents, students, teachers and community. Bernadette Ouellett, Principal, Tahayghen Elementary
Together with teachers, we chose a program of songs that tie into existing environmental projects the students are working on. We provide rehearsal CDs eight weeks ahead, along with provincially-recommended teachers' handbooks that connect songs to curriculum. We then arrive at the school for 3-4 days to rehearse with students, choose soloists and support students in writing short essays that discuss environmental issues which will be used for song introductions. Then we produce a culmination concert in the school gym or at a theatre for families to attend.