Louisiana’s Musical Heritage is Focus of New School Curriculum
If Louisana's first name is food then it's "saint" name would have to be music. Music is such a strong part of the heritage of our state that educators are now making it a focus in our state's schools.
Now, this isn't music like the ear numbing sound of fourth-graders attempting Greensleeves on the recorder. This is a study of Louisiana music and the course is being taught by real-life honest to God Louisiana musicians.
The program which is funded by a grant from the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities seeks to expose students in grades K-12 to several different genres of music that are homegrown in our state.
The program selected nine performers, each representing a different geographical or musical style from around Louisiana. Some of the nine include Lead Belly from northwest Louisiana, Little Water in Central Louisiana, Kenny Neal in Baton Rouge, and Nathan Williams Jr. in Acadiana.
So as you can see the curriculum will have more than its share of blues, zydeco, Cajun, swamp pop, and more. If you ask me, this is a great way to get Louisiana kids interested in not only music but the history of music in our state and how those musical influences have affected who we are and what we stand for.
The lessons are structured so that they can fit right into the teacher’s existing lesson plans, without compromising the rigorous standards public school education needs to meet. Besides, who wouldn't want to experience this much fun even in a classroom setting.
Mark Twain once wrote, "write what you know". In Louisiana, we're teaching what we two-step too and that is a good thing.