Pupils prepare instruments for musical garden

Charmain Z. Brackett/Correspondent
Christen Smith (from left), Kameron Jones, Fedalyia Cherry and Christopher Evans test a palm pipe drum at Monte Sano Elementary School.

Fourth- and fifth-graders at Monte Sano Elementary School spent two weeks working on a companion project to an outdoor sculpture garden they completed last year.


"This is a children's musical garden," said Cindy O'Brien, the executive director of the Art Factory, which joined with the school as part of its Art in School program.

The Art Factory used grant money from the Community Foundation of the CSRA and the Kroger and Publix Foundations to fund the project, which brought Bond Anderson of Sound Play Inc., of Parrott, Ga., to work with the pupils. Mr. Anderson has created musical gardens around the world. Some of his more recent work has been at a shopping mall in Dubai and at a park in South Korea.

The children worked on three pieces -- a tenor marimba, an African thumb piano and a palm pipe drum -- which will be placed at Pendleton King Park in April.

"It's great," pupil Kameron Jones said as he tested the palm pipe drum.

Not only have the kids learned about art and music but they also have had practical applications for their studies of measurements and fractions.

"They've been putting their knowledge to the test," Mr. Anderson said.

Some have had a chance to work with tools such as drill presses and battery-operated drills and screwdrivers.

First-year Principal Kathryn Perrin said she thinks the project is wonderful.

"I think this is a great opportunity for our fourth-and fifth-graders," she said. "I'm so excited."

A concrete pad must be poured before the items can be installed at Pendleton King. The musical garden will be placed near the sculpture garden and playground equipment donated by the Junior League of Augusta.

Reach Charmain Brackett at czbrackett@hotmail.com.



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