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Did you say marimbas?

Updated: Jun 18, 2019

Greetings to all!! I’m Sabrina Silva and I’m a longtime music educator and lifetime learner. I’ve finally taken the plunge and decided to write a blog about a specific dream of mine—making music with some fun loving people! Specifically on marimbas! For those who don’t know what a Marimba is it looks like this:

This is a diatonic Zimbabwean style marimba.

It may not look like much, but check this out. This is my Marimba performance group from my old school:

Isn’t that just cool? And did I mention that these students are 9 and 10 years old?

Do I even need to go any further about why marimbas? Well, okay. Here are 3 reasons:

1) They reach any and all learners. When I purchased the "Hot Marimba" book by Walt Hampton, I was expecting some major road humps teaching them the song; especially with my shy students or the ones who refuse to participate or the ones whose behavior makes you want to wear a war helmet. But WOW!! The kids ate it up like their last meal!! Every. Single. One of ‘em. Even the ones who normally don’t participate, even the ones who normally struggle, even the ones who are normally shy—these students amazes me with their success!! And they all wanted more!

2) It covers all levels of learning, but especially life lessons. There is no need to extend or differentiate your teaching intentionally. It happens on its own. Students will learn at all levels: visually, aurally, kinesthetically, etc. But not only that. It also teaches students lessons that go beyond the music room. It teaches them self-discipline, how to work with a team; how to communicate verbally and non-verbally; self-accountability, and most of all, it teaches students the one thing that I believe is lacking nowadays: GRIT. This is a great instrument to learn the value of sticking with something, to learn how to work through mistakes and frustration in a productive way. And the end result is such an amazing payoff! I do hope you will stick with me so I can show you this in person.

3) THEY ARE JUST FUN TO PLAY!! How many times have you had a rough day and just want to bang something??? This type of group playing is not only a great outlet, but also a productive one. The physicality of the playing, along with producing some awesome music tends to make any bad day just melt away. Nothing like blowing off some steam and making beautiful music!

These are my top 3 reasons why I love teaching marimba, but there are a lot more! I hope to give you some real life examples and hopefully a hands-on experience so you can see, hear and feel exactly what I'm talking about.

Thank you for joining me on this journey to achieving this goal! I'll see you at my next post! In the meantime, let me know a couple of things in the comments:


What is your experience with music? What worked best for you? When it comes to marimbas, it does not matter if you have been playing piano since you were a toddler or if this would be your first time playing--everyone is successful!

Does change come easy to you? Marimbas changed me not only as an educator but as a person as well. It was not easy and I learned a lot along the way, but keeping an open mind and thinking outside of the box come in really handy. Leave your answers below and I'll see you again soon!

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