Education and Community
"Education cannot engage in imparting values, but only in training people to acquire values."
The Raanana Symphonette perceives its educational activity to be one of its major signposts, believing it to be a deeply rewarding experience, which develops children's learning abilities, enriches them culturally and assists in developing auditory abilities.
In 2005, the Raanana Symphonette has initiated a special educational program – Pa'ama (Beat) - based upon extensive research and in cooperation with the Israeli Ministry of Education, providing exposure to the core classical music repertoire and various musical instruments.
The program is founded upon various researches which manifest a direct link between classical music appreciation and the development of learning skills, including quantitative capabilities. Music also contributes extensively to the development of concentration and listening capabilities. Among several contributors to the development of the program, a major figure has been Professor Judith Heldman of the Department of Brain Research, the Weizmann Institute.
The children undergo extensive preparation, during which they encounter the musical pieces through movement, playing, singing, improvisation, composing and acting. Preparatory work is carried out with the full co-operation of the orchestra's Instructional Department, the Department of Supervision of Musical Education at the Ministry of Education, as well as kindergarten and school teachers. The program includes tuition sessions, distribution of information sheets, training and follow-up.
Pa'ama project is a continuous educational process, from kindergarten to the fourth grade. Every year, the children acquire musical skills and are exposed to many musical pieces from the established canon.
The program includes pieces and songs evolving around a specific yearly subject. Apart from the usual activities, it includes a 45-minute chamber concert, during which the children are intimately, thoroughly exposed to classical music. They participate in the encounters, whether by singing, playing a musical instrument or conducting. This makes for an unforgettable experience.
The program culminates in a fully-fledged symphonic concert, played at the local concert hall. It includes around ten pieces previously encountered through the program, and a song which calls for an active participation of the audience.