Some students whispered excitedly among themselves, while others jumped up and down in anticipation. All of them peered curiously at the group of strangers in their classrooms.
These creative students from Briarmeadow Charter School and Wilson Montessori School were thrilled to discover they had won the Nutrition Services’ National School Lunch Week jingle contest.
“It was a bit shocking,” Briarmeadow sixth-grader Gabriella Perez said. “We’re proud of ourselves for creating a song and getting recognized.”
Elementary, middle, and high school students were asked to compose a short jingle or rap about the importance of making healthy food choices. The contest was developed in honor of National School Lunch Week, which was held from Oct. 14 to 18.
This year, the theme — What’s on Your Playlist? — highlighted the variety of flavors and dishes offered in today’s school lunch.
- Wilson Montessori: https://vimeo.com/showcase/6534547/video/369328536
- Briarmeadow Middle School: https://vimeo.com/showcase/6534547/video/369402919
HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said the contest was a perfect integration of art and nutrition.
“It was a wonderful opportunity for students to express their creativity and to be able to lead their own learning,” Lathan said.
Briarmeadow Music Teacher Ronith Epelbon said she divided her sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-graders into groups and asked them to come up with lyrics and a tune.
“I liked what I heard,” Epelbon said. “It made students think about their health and it’s a great strategy to combine it with fine arts.”
Wilson Montessori ESL Teacher Adam Blair said he regularly incorporates music into the lessons for his class of fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-graders. He said students helped to write the lyrics, record the song, and edit the video.
When Wilson Montessori fifth-grader Andrea Groudan heard about the contest, she immediately asked Blair if she could choreograph the video.
“I love these kinds of projects,” Groudan said. “I wanted the dance to show the music and the words.”
Blair said music transforms the classroom into a more engaging environment for students.
“They will supersede any expectations,” Blair said. “Anyone can be creative.”