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The Santa Barbara Education Foundation awarded SB Unified music teachers with $24,000 to purchase necessary instruments and materials for the upcoming school year.

This year SB Unified music teachers are adapting more than just their lesson plans to teach students to learn music from home. McKinley Elementary Music Teacher, Karen Dutton, has a plan in mind for her funds that differs from years past. “These funds will enable me to purchase items to make each McKinley Bear a Take Home Music Kit,” said Dutton. “Each kit will contain some rhythm instruments, a scarf for movement activities, and some manipulatives that students will be able to use to create notes and beat patterns.”

In addition, older students will also receive simple instruments like a recorder or drumsticks to learn rhythm through bucket drumming. These instruments will allow students to take a break from the ever-present digital learning space and continue their musical education with hands-on activities.

The funds are a result of a year-long fundraising effort by the Santa Barbara Education Foundation with help from community partners such as the Johnson Ohana Foundation, Daniel and Mandy Hochman, Performing Arts Scholarship Foundation, and proceeds from the annual Keep the Beat Radiothon on 99.9 KTYD.

From music teachers to instruments, SBEF has been raising funds to support music education in local schools since 2003. Today, all 5000+ elementary students learn to play an instrument during their school day. An originating partner in the Pianos on State project, SBEF also runs a year-round instrument drive.