The Power of Music in the Rhythm of Life

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Music Education


Music education changes lives in many ways and contains a deeper power than we could ever imagine. The effect music has on our lives, both intrinsically and extrinsically, shapes the way we live and how we think. From the classroom to the real world, music is the pulse of life with rhythms that connect us all. Hannah Gadd Ardrey is in her fifth year of teaching music history and choir to 6th through 12th grade students from diverse backgrounds and various learning abilities at Lafayette Middle School and Lafayette High School. As a teacher in a rural public school district in Oxford, Mississippi, Ardrey is passionate about providing students opportunities to make interdisciplinary connections, develop real-world skills, and change the world around them with music. In 2018, Ardrey partnered with elementary special education teachers in her district to create the More than Music program - a student-led music class for elementary age special education students. Since beginning her teaching career in 2015, Ardrey has grown the choral program from 60 to 130 students. Fine arts provide outlets for students to lead and cultivate a climate for growth and acceptance amongst peers and in the community. As the 2019-2020 Mississippi Teacher of the Year, Mrs. Gadd Ardrey promotes her belief that M.U.S.I.C can Motivate, Understand, and Sculpt Independent Citizens. She participates in the mentor program for the Lafayette County School District and serves on the Mississippi Teacher Council. Ardrey received a Bachelor of Music in 2013 and a Master of Music in choral conducting in 2015, both from the University of Mississippi. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.

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