Hi! My name is Gerry Gianutsos and I’m a music teacher at P.S./I.S. 78Q in Long Island City, NY. My students call me Mr. G.
I started teaching in 2003 as a substitute. I was hired in September of 2004 full time to establish a music program at P.S. 78Q. From humble beginnings of a keyboard lab and nothing else, the music program has expanded to include a traditional band program from 4th grade through middle school. In my opinion, the program improves every year. I started out my teaching career doing the Music and the Brain curriculum exclusively. Around 2007, I started to integrate some of the central premises and philosophies of the Little Kids Rock program into my curriculum.
While Music and the Brain is a traditional piano program, Little Kids Rock is built on a language acquisition model of music pedagogy and encourages culturally relevant music while encouraging children to communicate and improvise using music as their language. The program was developed in consideration of language acquisition theory as well as traditional music education methods like Orff and Dalcroze.
Integrating both programs is turning out to be quite effective in improving the musical literacy of my students.