School grant helps Judson ISD students learn how to play marimba

Music teacher Charles Ford helped bring sound to the classroom

SAN ANTONIO – A Judson ISD music teacher is introducing students to a new sound.

For weeks, Park Village Blended Learning Academy students have been learning how to play the marimba.

“It got difficult at first and then it got really easy,” Mia Perez, a fourth grade student said.

Music teacher Charles Ford helped bring the sound to the classroom.

“It’s a Zimbabwean-style instrument. We build them here in America, but it really has roots from Africa and Zimbabwe,” Ford said.

Students are also growing their leadership skills and confidence.

“I love that unity factor. The way it brings them together. It’s like teamwork, and that’s what makes it special,” Ford said.

Ford recently received his second grant to continue teaching the instrument.

“Some of them are up to about over to 2 to 3 grand. And so those grants mean a lot to not only me, but to the students, to their parents, because we get the instruments here so much quickly,” Ford said.

Students are learning a variety of songs and are excited to perform at community events.

“Working with young elementary students, when they see these large instruments or they just get excited and get ready to be engaged,” Ford said.

About the Author:

Tiffany Huertas is a reporter for KSAT 12 known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.