Qmunity Teacher Profile: Sarah Jensen

by Abby @ Quaver on December 14, 2011

in In the Quaver Classroom!

Everything we do at Quaver HQ is done to equip and empower Music Educators to do what they do even better!

We’ll be profiling one of these wonderful teachers every month!

Today’s Featured Teacher is Sarah Jensen, Music Educator at Saint Anne School in Bismarck, North Dakota!
We asked her to share her experience with Quaver’s Program with you!

Take it away, Sarah:

As I walked down the hallways yesterday, I was attacked by kids wanting to know how much longer until we got to Skype with Quaver. Today (one day after “Quaver Skype Day” – a holiday at my school), the kids are still buzzing about it. I received so many student AND parent comments about this amazing opportunity! One mom told me that the first words out of her daughter’s mouth that morning were:

“It’s Quaver Skype day!!”

In fact, the kids think we should fly down and visit Quaver’s shop for their 8th grade field trip. The fact that the team at Quaver took time out of their busy day to visit our school just goes to show how passionate they are about music education!

Until I found the Quaver Unit on Music History, I had never liked teaching about composers or music history.

Maybe that is because my college class on music history was at 8 am and I slept through most of it :) Quaver’s curriculum is so engaging and funny that it sticks with kids and makes them want to learn more about music. I am all for THAT! My son discovered that a bunch of the ringtones on his pretend cellphone are from the Classical Period. He now uses it like an Mp3 player and listens to them constantly.

I won’t lie, the novelty of him recognizing the songs wore off after a week, and now it is just annoying to hear an electronic version of “Ode to Joy” resonating from the back of the van.

After we made our way through the different time periods, the kids got more and more into it. They loved that they could access the website from home and learn more as they go. The Phone Box is a wonderful resource! The stories and visuals make the composers come alive! Once the kids discovered Quaver’s Phone Box, they were telling me facts about the composers!

I even had a parent tell me that she has to set up a schedule so that her kids can all have equal time on QuaverMusic.com because it is better than TV in her house.

Now that says something! Students are creating songs with the piano, guitar and drums. My guitar kids are really into QStrum since the guitar hand actually plays the chords that you put into the measure. What a great (and free!!) tool for budding musicians to play and experiment!

I used the History Unit with students in grades 1-8. My first graders learned as much (or more) than the 8th graders. I was amazed to see how it reached all the levels without going too far over the little one’s heads or boring the big kids. I felt bad for my Kinders because they hadn’t met Quaver yet, so I pulled out the first video of Unit 1 on beat. Not only did they understand it- they were telling me all week what beat different songs were: 2, 3, or 4! I was floored and totally convinced that this program is more effective than anything else I’ve tried so far.

I am excited to see what my kids can do after we make our way through more of the lessons this year. Boom-Chicka-Boom!

Quaver Skyping with Sarah's Class in North Dakota!

Thanks for sharing your Quaver Story with us Sarah! Keep up the great work!

Join Sarah and other teachers using Quaver’s Program in their classrooms at QuaverQmunity.com for lesson ideas, encouragement, and more!

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 sarah December 15, 2011 at 9:26 am

Thanks Abby!
One more little note, at the end of our last Skype session, Quaver told the kids that every time they see me to stop, look me in the eye, (of course Quaver made a funny face when he did it so the kids do too!) and tell me that I rock. Not one day has gone by without at least one kid telling me (with a quirky look on their face) that I rock. What an impression you have made on Saint Anne School!


2 Abby @ Quaver December 16, 2011 at 9:46 am

That is awesome Sarah! And you do rock :)
Sharing this with our whole team!


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