52 THE QUEENS COURIER • BUZZ • JUNE 18, 2020 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
School of Rock Queens transitions
to app-based teaching strategy
BY BENJAMIN MANDILE
Th e COVID-19 pandemic might be
stopping people from going to work and
congregating, but it’s not stopping School
of Rock students from practicing and
jamming together thanks to a phone
application and online classes.
School of Rock, a nationwide chain of
schools that teaches musicians, has partnered
with the Hal Leonard Corporation
to create a proprietary application for
recording and learning music while social
distancing measures are being observed.
Students record themselves in the safety
of their home with the School of Rock
Method App before the instructors compile
the audio and video sections of the
band into a full-band recording.
Playing with others is an “integral” part of
the method School of Rock uses for music
education, said Rob Price, CEO of School
of Rock. Using the application allows the
music schools to foster connection while
students are forced to remain apart.
Th e 280 schools nationwide have been
teaching music remotely for its 40,000
students with 5,000 virtual classes being
taught each day. Th e schools accomplish
this by using video conferencing between
students and the instructors along with
the new application.
School of Rock Queens started with
70 students at its Whitestone location
but has only had 42 students participating
in the online lessons early last
month. Despite only having about 40 students
in the online classes the school has
had more students attend other events
through online platforms in early May.
“It’s convenient to not have to leave the
house,” said Evelyn Canada, a student of
School of Rock Queens.
She said that once the school physically
opens up she would like to start attending
in person again, but that for the “master
class” it would not diff er much from the
online learning. School of Rock Queens
instructors have said teaching remotely
is interesting and has its pros and cons.
Cotter Champlin, an instructor teaching
from his home in Wayland, NY, said that
having no commute is a positive aspect
of remote teaching, but not having teacher
and student interaction in person is a
drawback to remote lessons.
“It can oft en critically enhance the lesson,”
said Cotter of in-person interactions.
Sebastian Danalis, an instructor from
Bayside believes the app makes the transition
to remote teaching easier. “Th e app for
sure has made the transition to remote lessons
a lot easier,” Danalis said. “Having the
songs we are working on fully transcribed
is great for them to learn at their own pace.”
Safe practices after
School of Rock Queens had been set
to open this spring but due to the pandemic
it now expects to open later
this Summer at its Bayside location,
according to Karen Flyer, general manager
of School of Rock Queens.
When the Bayside location opens,
it will ensure safe practices to protect
its students and families from
the spread of viruses. These practices
include requiring masks be worn, not
sharing instruments, sanitizing surfaces
and working with a medical professional
to create safe regulations shared
among all 280 schools nationwide.
They will also only be teaching lessons
after opening and will not be
hosting any other events. Dr. Nina
Shapiro has been working with School
of Rock corporate to implement safe
regulations for holding in-person
How to get involved
Flyer said that anyone who wants to
pick up learning an instrument while
social distancing is welcome to join
online classes to prepare for joining a
band at the school once they learn the
basics of the instrument.
School of Rock Queens signed up
four new students in late April and
early May to start taking online classes.
“Some people are at home and they
don’t have anything to do,” said Flyer.
“So it’s actually a great time to pick
up music lessons.” Those interested
in joining School of Rock Queens can
reach out to Flyer at kflyer@schoolofrock.
com or call 929-999-7625.
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Photo courtesy of School of Rock Queens