Barbara Lawlor, Nederland. Since they were in preschool or kindergarten, this year’s graduating fifth graders have been looking forward to leaving the elementary school and moving on to middle school. Sometimes they are filled with anxiety, sometimes they can’t wait for the move. It is a big milestone in their Nederland academic and social life.
Last Tuesday, December 6, 2016, the fifth graders were invited to attend a tour of the school and a baked potato dinner, loving to load up on the sour cream. They met teachers and walked through the halls, visiting the classrooms. It was a great ice breaker, a time to slip into the middle level shoes they will be wearing next year.
About 30 fifth grade students who played in the Nederland Elementary School band and orchestra had an even closer look at what they can expect in the fall. They took part in the NMSHS and NES Winter Orchestra Concert, directed by Christine Mallery.
Many of the musicians were just becoming acquainted with their instruments and many of them were just learning how to play with other musicians. They may have been inexperienced but they were invited to take a chair on the stage and perform for a large, live audience.
Excitement filled the air as the students tuned their instruments. Some of the children wore antlers or Santa hats. Some were all dressed up, some casual. The fifth graders began the concert with your basic “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” and you could see them relax as they played the familiar chords.
Then they had a bit of fun, playing “Boil Them Cabbage Down,” their uncertainty was booted out by the upbeat melody and when they took their bows, they were experts in “How to Perform on a High School Stage.”