Music-Making for emotional well-being

Music-making for emotional well-being during Covid-19

During COVID-19 Lockdown, SmileFoundationIndia.org in association with AmaniProject.org continued to teach the children (virtually) to manage their emotions through Music-Making, acting, games and many more activities that are designed to revolve around Social Emotional Learning and Community Development.

Amani Project has spent years developing programs specifically to prepare young people to be more resilient in difficult times. Smile Foundation partnered with Amani Project in 2018 and since then the project has been going on  at various centers in Delhi-NCR.  

The project engages children in various gamified activities such as:

  • making instruments from found objects,
  • jamming in instrument circles,
  • learning elements of music-making in fun ways,
  • writing own songs on different emotions with the help of a tool called the Mood Meter,
  • composing songs based on Empathy,
  • interviewing important social personalities within their communities and creating/performing songs based on their work etc.
Music-making for emotional well-being during Covid-19

To adapt the E-Learning during the lockdown surveys were conducted with the students through telephonic and internet calls.

In these surveys, the students were asked about their emotional well-being and well-being in general, availability of landline or Mobile Phones  familiarity with the Communication Apps, Time Slot they preferred for the online sessions and  whether they were willing to attend the online sessions. An overwhelmingly positive response was received. After gathering all the required information and making sure that the children as well as the mentors were comfortable, the online sessions began.

For children who had access to the internet, sessions were held through various video conferencing apps, and for the others, the sessions were held via voice calls.

Music-making for emotional well-being during Covid-19
Music-making for emotional well-being during Covid-19

Music and music-making during Covid-19 did one of its main functions – it helped us to stay connected with each other.

Starting off sessions with everyone singing one single note in unison, learning simple compositions based on Indian Ragas, noticing and discussing how different notes are able to create different emotions in us, making new instruments from found objects, playing music on instrument simulator apps, etc helped the children to stay socially connected while maintaining the physical distancing during the lockdown. Apart from these sessions, the children also participated in various online campaigns that included making music for – the
Coronavirus Awareness, thanking the Corona Warriors and expressing empathy for the people affected by COVID-19.

Amani Project and Smile Foundation, along with many other organizations and individuals, such as you, yes YOU, tell us if we are wrong, are aware of the potential of music to help attain inner peace as well as balancing the harmony within smaller communities and the world as a whole.  Smile Foundation and Amani Project believe that everyone should have access to Music. The collaboration is engaging more and more members, especially children 8-14 years of  age under this project, irrespective of their backgrounds.

To know more, visit the websites SmileFoundationIndia.org   AmaniProject.org and consider subscribing to the newsletters.

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Author

Shashank Saxena

Shashank is a versatile and sensitive artist with an exceptional level of patience and humility. As the Music Teaching Artist at the Amani Project, India, he plays the role of catalyst, inspiring children to explore, learn and use music at Amani club activities. Shashank has studied Rock and Pop Guitar along with Drums from Trinity College, London, and trained in Indian Classical Vocals from Gandharva Mahavidhyalaya, Delhi.

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