Rock duo educate students at Haisla Community School about ecology through music – Kitimat Northern Sentinel
Haisla Community School asked 75 students to complete an online educational performance with the ARTist Response Team (ART).
With different age groups performing different songs, ART worked with the school and asked the students to present a 20 minute concert online.
Founded in 1991, ART is an independent Vancouver-based production house run by singer / songwriter / producer Holly Arntzen and Kevin Wright and their band, The Wilds. They have written a library of eco-rock songs and specialize in music and entertainment that educates people about ecology.
ART primarily focuses on remote communities at no cost to schools.
Hoping to begin their in-person Skeena Watershed tour of the region in March 2020, everything came to a halt due to the pandemic, so they had to revamp their online program.
“Sing Out For The Earth was developed in response to the pandemic shutdown in March 2020, when we could no longer create and produce live music programs in schools. With the support of the BC Used Oil Management Association (BCUOMA) and Tire Stewardship of BC, we have developed a series of online videos that help teachers integrate music and environmental education into the classroom, ”Arntzen said in A press release. “The blessing in disguise is that these videos and programs will be useful even after live music programs are allowed to return to schools.”
“When ART’s Holly Arntzen and Kevin Wright brought us the Sing Out For The Earth virtual concert, we knew it was a fantastic opportunity for our students to be resilient and innovative at a time when so many activities were canceled, “Leana Brady, assistant principal of Haisla Community School, said. “The music program brought the students together as they learned and sang about our natural environment. It was a successful, fun and entertaining learning experience, and the students are very excited to share their performance with everyone. Plus, being a virtual platform, it allows anyone, anywhere, to watch, learn and enjoy.
BCUOMA is a nonprofit that focuses on individuals who recycle used motor oil, the Stewardship of British Columbia, which promotes the recycling of used tires, and the Skeena Watershed Conservation Coalition have come together to help fund the ‘ART.
ART tries to create new ways to learn about ecology with its Voices of Nature school music programs and community concerts. Their 8th annual project in Edmonton in 2015 saw more than 2,000 students race the Jubilee Auditorium and was filmed as a water conservation special, Water For Life, to air on CTV2 in Alberta and PBS in Spokane.
ART works with thousands of young people each year, producing spring tours to the Skeena and Fraser watersheds titled Up Your Watershed! and Rock the Salish Sea tours in coastal communities. ART’s award-winning textbooks for music-based educators offer curriculum-related activities related to song lyrics and help teachers bring music into the classroom for environmental education.