BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Mary Kay McMillin School Library in Berkeley Heights is a colorful and inviting place with shelves and bins full of books and decorated with paintings and plush versions of children’s book characters. It is an environment meant to make children excited to read and learn. But on Wednesday, February 19, Governor Livingston’s chapter of Tri M, the music honor society, turned the library into an instrument petting zoo to teach kids about musical instruments. 

The Tri M members taught the children about different types of instruments, such as brass, woodwinds, strings, and percussions. Several groups of students, from Pre-K to first grade, were brought into the library to feel multiple kinds of instruments, and even try to play some.

Senior Emily Scheibe, the president of Tri M, said, “Most of the kids seemed a little in awe at first, but as they became less shy they all wanted to try out the instruments.” 

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While interacting with the high school musicians, many of the Mary Kay McMillin students expressed interest in learning an instrument in school. 

Senior George Skinner, the chairperson for the field trip, said, “I think it’s so important to have events like this. Music and music education is so beneficial to the growing mind, we should expose kids to this more often.” 

After the Tri M members returned to Governor Livingston, they made a visit to room eight, where they shared their music with the students in the Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) program. They taught the ABA students a little bit about each instrument and let them try them out.

Overall, all the students learned a lot and had fun. Skinner said, “I thought the trip was a massive success.” The trip is expected to be run again next year.