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Registrar & Office Manager

Open for Applications starting October 20, 2021

Part-time, 30 hours per week.

We’re looking for someone with strong organizational ability to manage program registrations and the School office.  You’ll need good customer service skills, bookkeeping and database experience.  Two years minimum office experience required. Candidates should be comfortable working in a fast paced environment.

The position averages 30 hours per week.  Core work hours are 1:00 to 6:00 pm, 5 days, Monday to Friday; Saturday hours desired in lieu of a weekday.  Final start/end time and schedule of days to be negotiated.

NEXT STEP:   Please send NOTE of interest by email, to Sarah@pakmusic.org.  With subject line:   Registrar / Office Manager.

We will provide more detailed information.

Free Special Event for Early Childhood Educators

Music not only supports music development but is a natural tool for social and emotional learning in early childhood.

If you are an educator, we invite you to join Dr. Lili Levinowitz, Director of Research at Music Together Worldwide for a free webinar on edWeb.net.

  • Tuesday, October 26, 2021
  • 3:00 to 4:00 pm
  • Advance registration with Music Together Worldwide required, with link to follow.
  • Professionals can earn a CE certificate for this webinar.
Register Here

More About The Social-Emotional Development with Music

Healthy social-emotional development in early childhood can have a profound impact on a child’s overall development and learning. In fact, many early childhood experts see positive social and emotional skills as paramount for school readiness and later school and life success. With the interruption of the school year and less socialization opportunities, there is valid concern among researchers, educators, and parents that the COVID-19 pandemic has had—and will continue to have—a negative impact on young children’s social and emotional development.

Music education curriculum components not only support music development but are naturally supportive tools for social and emotional learning in early childhood. Developmentally appropriate, participatory, group, and dyad music and movement activities have special characteristics that can support young children as they develop socially and emotionally, and also support social competence and reduce stress.

In this edWebinar, Dr. Lili M. Levinowitz will review the important dimensions of social and emotional development and share some early research on the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on young children’s social and emotional learning. She will then demonstrate fun and accessible music activities that support a range of social and emotional skills, such as cooperation, prosocial skills, and self-regulation, which all contribute to social competence and positive group process in the preschool classroom. Attendees will also gain strategies for extending the music making—and therefore the developmental benefits—to the home.

Level Up Your Child’s Learning with Music

It’s been a year of drive-through birthday parties, Zoom meetings in the same room as your three-year-old’s virtual preschool class, and feeding everyone in the house what sure feels like infinite meals and snacks. Every. Single. Day.

Now that the next stage of pandemic parenting is upon us, you might be wondering what you can do to support your young child’s learning. Our answer? Sing with them! (Seriously. That’s it.)

Like everything we do with our Music Together® program, the suggestion is rooted in research. Let’s take a look behind the scenes and explore how making music supports brain development and socio-emotional learning.

Music: The Brain Builder


Check out the National Association for Music
Education blog
 for the full infographic showing
the impact of music on the brain.

We’ve all experienced a mood boost when we belt out a ballad while driving or have a hairbrush mic-drop moment. It’s (literally) because of our brains! Singing increases production of dopamine and serotonin, the so-called feel-good and happiness hormones. It also puts many of our brain regions to work, strengthening our neural pathways. Neural connections are kind of like our nervous system superhighways, and they’re formed through our experiences and habits. When we take part in activities that strengthen them, it’s easier to learn and grow throughout our lives.

For young children, whose brain architecture is forming, music-making can be even more impactful. You see, by our mid-twenties, our neural pathways are pretty much done being built, but they’re just coming together for babies and toddlers. In fact, our brains are more active during the first five years of life than they will ever be. Positive early experiences create strong neural pathways—and a strong foundation for all future learning.

Here’s how music acts as a brain architecture superhero. Because music is accessible and enjoyable for young children, they are likely to repeat songs they like over and over (and over), especially when the grownups they love sing with them. This repetition and engagement exercises important neural pathways, making them stronger and supporting the development of a sturdy brain foundation. And all you have to do is sing!

This Fall of 2021, join us as we sing together during Music Together classes.  We’re offering classes inside, outside and online.  You’ll receive a song book and CD (also access to online music app) as part of your enrollment.   You can view our class schedules here.


21 Ways to Harmony Feature No. 5

The Reality of Fear: Resolving Music Stereotypes

Join Pakachoag Music School online for a “Friday the 13th” special event. This 21 Ways to Harmony in 2021 Feature No. 5 will explore the origins and history of music stereotypes, many of which have been built on assumptions and fears. We hope that this journey will transform what once was ‘music of your fears’ to music to your ears.

What to Expect

Through conversation and music, Kristjon will explore assumptions we make about audiences and performers of different music genres. Where do these assumptions come from? and how have they become cultural stereotypes? Does any of this matter? or hold meaning for us as a community and individually? We’ll uncover some of the missed commonalities between/among genres as we continue to think more deeply about the role of music in life.

Additional Features Upcoming

No. 6 – Monday, October 25 – Postponed until Saturday, November 20th.  Please watch for updated postings.

We’re working on some exciting new outreach activity and have been busy coordinating students returning to in-person lessons.  As a result, Mr. Imperio is postponing feature No. 6 until November.  Please watch for email updates and we hope to have you with us for Feature No. 6 on 11/20/21.

No. 7 – Friday, December 31 – 21 to 22. Ways Forward

Pakachoag Music School is pleased to announce that two students have been selected for the 2021 Reinburg Award for Effort, Commitment and Attitude:  Mai Caslowitz, voice student, of Sturbridge and Ksheeraja Ramanujum, violin student, from Shrewsbury.

About Mai Caslowitz of Sturbridge

Mai Caslowitz, from Sturbridge, is a senior at Tantasqua High School.  Mai has been enrolled at Pakachoag for over 10 years, first starting at age two! Mai began her musical journey with Pakachoag in 2005 as a participant, with mom, in the School’s early childhood Music Together program.  Mai later enrolled in the School’s Suzuki Program as a violin student, and in 2018 narrowed her focus to private vocal studies.

Mai has excelled during her music studies, most notably being selected for the 2021 All Eastern Music Festival Chorus which draws vocalists from across the northeastern US.

Mai’s private voice teacher, Pakachoag faculty member Silvia Irving, formerly a professional vocalist with Boston’s Handel & Haydn Society, writes:  “These four years with Mai have been an inspirational journey with a blossoming young artist. From the beginning she has been an exceptionally self-motivated student, always being open to learn, explore and share new ideas and literature. Mai’s consistent focus and effort has allowed her to gain richness and flexibility in her vocal expression and to sing an impressive array of songs from classical to music theater.”

Mai will enter Ryder University in the fall pursuing a BFA in Musical Theatre.

About Ksheeraja Ramanujam of Shrewsbury

Ksheeraja Ramanujam, of Shrewsbury, the second recipient of this year’s Reinburg Award, studies violin at Pakachoag with Amy Matherly.  She has been enrolled for seven years and is currently completing her junior year at Shrewsbury High School where she plays in the school orchestra.

Teacher Amy Matherly comments, “Ksheeraja loves playing the violin and views it as a pleasure to be enjoyed. She listens to music with interest and sets goals for herself. A dedicated and enthusiastic student, she practices thoughtfully and comes to her lessons well prepared. I am pleased that she has received this award!”

In addition to her activities at Pakachoag, Ksheeraja participates in the Shrewsbury High School Orchestra and studies the Carnatic style of classical Indian violin at the Anubhava School of Music. She was also accepted into the 2021 MMEA Senior Orchestra.

Ksheeraja is interested in biochemistry and plans to pursue a career in that field.  She plans to continue playing the violin in college and would like to set up a multi-instrument fusion club where people from different backgrounds and cultures can come together to learn from each other and enjoy music.


About the Peggy Kelley Reinburg Award

The Peggy Kelley Reinburg Award for Effort, Commitment and Attitude, named after the School’s second director who strove to instill an appreciation for excellence among all School students, is awarded annually, each spring.  With the pandemic closures in Spring 2020, the School did not present an award last year and is thus happy to be able to acknowledge two very deserving students this spring of 2021.

Prior recipients of the PKR award, which dates back to 1992, include students who have gone on to excel in the sciences, law enforcement,  engineering, aviation, education (both k-12 and higher education), social work and professional careers in music performance, music education, and musical theater.

Harmonies From Home

As we wrap up the 2020-2021 pandemic School Year, here in office and families at home have had the pleasure of observing the progress of a number of students who chose, with teacher support, to submit videos for year-end performance classes.

Monthly performance classes (less formal than recitals) are a staple of the School’s private lesson program.  Teachers help students set goals and worith with them to polish special pieces so they are ready for public performance.

Congratulations to the over 50 students who participated in remote performance classes during the course of the current year.

Here, we present three classes.  Each features students of varying ages, instruments and levels.  The focus is on understanding how to present on-stage/in public.  ‘Polish’ is always our keyword for student performances, never ‘perfection’.

Many thanks to our skilled faculty who have invested effort in preparing students for performance; and Kristjon Imperio, Director of Programs & Outreach, whose tech savvy is bringing us together.

June Class No. 1

June Class No. 2

June Class No. 3

We encourage you to visit Pakachoag on YouTube AND click ‘subscribe’.

You can find a full array of videos, from special events to students in performance over many years, to early childhood Music Together class introductions.



 

 

 

 

21 Ways to Harmony Feature No. 4

Solstice Inspirations:  Dreaming on a Midsummer’s Night

Sunday, June 20th, 2021 at 6:30 pm

Premiering on YouTube

Solstice Inspirations

Hosted by Kristjon Imperio, Director of Programs & Outreach

What to Expect

Join Pakachoag Music School to celebrate the summer solstice.

The solstice, our longest day of the year, has been celebrated by people and cultures throughout the ages.

For this midsummer reverie, we will explore the works and musings of poets and composers within the western classical tradition as inspired by light and energy associated with summer and the solstice.

What significance does the summer solstice “hold” for you? Are you drawn to the iconic or the scientific; the spiritual or the physical? Consider your thoughts and practices surrounding this event and compare them alongside those whose imagination and creativity remain illuminated through words and art.

Additional Features Upcoming

No. 5 – Friday, August 13th – The Reality of Fear: Resolving Music Stereotypes

No. 6 – Monday, October 25 – International Artist’s Day: Contouring Melodies & Masterpieces

No. 7 – Friday, December 31 – 21 to 22. Ways Forward

About 21 Ways to Harmony

Pakachoag Music School entered 2021 with a refreshed commitment to building harmony as part of community – both within and without.

During a difficult 2020, where conflict surfaced all around us – locally and nationally – the School began to receive a different kind of feedback from parents and adult students about the importance of music-making in life and especially for mental health.

The repeated thanks and appreciation coming from School families around the importance of music stood in deep contrast to the divisiveness that was going on externally.

Conversations host and Pakachoag Program Director Kristjon Imperio writes:  “In conversations among our staff and board members surrounding the challenges in our community and nation, we realize that these common ‘music messages’ stand as lasting principles, extending beyond popular and passing narratives.”

Throughout the year, Mr. Imperio will lead seven conversations, sometimes accompanied by music.  With an array of varied conversational partners planned, we will be looking to uncover – perhaps even create — multiple “resolutions” as part of each conversation that can help each of us become aware of commonalities within our human experience we might not have considered previously.

We’ll encourage reflection on how we use those commonalities to create harmony in life, and along the way provide a little inspiration for what it means to make music locally.  We often hear that music is the common language.  We’re digging deeper to uncover, in a different way, what those commonalities CAN be, for 2021 and beyond.

Sophia from Sutton, Voice and Guitar


This month’s student spotlight is Sophia Maloney.  Sophia takes voice lessons with Silvia Irving and guitar lessons with Jeff Dostal.

What Does Sophia Particularly Like about Lessons?

The thing that excites Sophia the most about her lessons is learning to play and sing the songs that she loves. Combining her guitar and voice skills she has acquired over the years, Sophia says it has been fun to learn songs by the many different artists she enjoys, from indie rock to musical theatre!

How Have you Grown with Music?

Sophie prepares to sing at a December 2014 performance class. Year 3 of lessons.

Sophia’s mom says, “Sophia has grown tremendously.”  During her first lessons, Sophia remembers feeling a bit overwhelmed, but also felt comfortable to ask questions and to try her best.   When she was in middle school, Sophie says “it felt like a pain” to practice.  More recently, as a high school student, through her perseverance, Sophie has developed a love and passion for music, and is consistently self-motivated, practicing almost every day now for a number of years.

On Remote Lessons During COVID…

In 2020, Sophie continued her musical education through remote lessons. One of her most memorable remote lessons was with her guitar teacher Jeff:  “Jeff and I were both trying to play a song together that I had brought in. We were able to time it out in a way that we were playing a song at the same time going around the lag on zoom. Although it was difficult it worked in the end!”

Sophie looks forward to moving back to in-person lessons.  She says online classes have their benefits, like not having to drive, but “nothing compares to being able to make music with someone in person”, and we couldn’t agree more, Sophie!

Is there anything you have learned in your lessons that helps you in other situations?

Student Recital 2019

One outstanding point that Sophie makes is that “a big part of music is advocating for yourself and and sharing your thoughts, and that has absolutely helped me to speak my mind in group settings”.

As of spring 2021, Sophie has been enrolled for 10 years!  Becoming a musician doesn’t happen overnight.  Along the way – no matter whether year 1 or year 10 – the lessons we learn last for life.  What a thrill that Sophie has been doing this long enough to be able to learn some of the more challenging lessons that transfer from music to other settings.  Congratulations Sophie!

Welcoming All

As we look ahead, beyond this very abnormal year, we’ve been busy planning for how we can welcome new students and others in the community to experience music with Pakachoag.

The new Faces of Pakachoag photo display adds splashes of color to the stairwell between the second and third floors at 10 Irving Street and greets visitors with a sampling of who we are today.

The display is one of several activities underway to create a greater sense of community for enrolled families.  Or, if you are not currently enrolled, we’re hoping the display will inspire you to consider Pakachoag as your home for music learning and enjoyment.

Are these faces ‘typical’ Pakachoag students?

Actually, there is no typical Pakachoag student – only someone who enjoys music and wants to learn, or for our younger early childhood children, families who wish to nurture their child’s natural music ability.

Because lessons and classes happen once each week, enrolled families, as well as visitors, do not always see the many faces of Pakachoag that rotate through our home site and satellites each week.

Our Faces of Pakachoag are every age – from baby to senior citizen.  We have different colors of skin, hair, eyes, and height; different instruments played; different stages of growth and levels of accomplishment (which you can sometimes see by how a student is ‘attached’ to their instrument).

Many thanks to Target of Worcester, Westborough and Millbury.  Together, those stores donated the frames and printing services needed to put the display in place.

If you do not currently come in for lessons, please feel free to email Sarah@pakmusic.org to arrange for a tour and you can see the display in-person!

Other Ways You can Get to Know Us

Other activities underway for getting to know us better include:

  • The new in 2019 Faculty Feature video series and
  • The Student Spotlight effort.

The videos and spotlights are posted roughly every month or two.

Where We’re Going With All This…

Wrapped within these efforts and our goal for growth is a commitment to finding ways to ease access to after-school music enrichment for all in the Greater Worcester community.

That commitment is in part because statistics show access to quality arts instruction is not equal, with disparities tied to income, race and ethnicity, and geography.  Search/google ‘Arts Equity 2020’, ‘Gaps in access to after-school high quality arts programming’, ‘Supporting student success in after-school programs’ and you’ll get the picture.

If you are an enrolled student in any program and would like to have your photo included in the display, please email info@pakmusic.org and we’ll get you on the wait-list for when we begin to rotate some of the photos.  We’ll rotate roughly every 9 to 12 months.