Love Grows Through Music & Sign Language

Second graders in Barbara Grollimund’s class at Matthew Paterson Elementary expressed themselves through song and movement, despite being spaced six feet apart at their desks and wearing masks.

As part of their music class, the students had the opportunity to learn the words and sign language for “Love Grows One by One” by Carol Johnson. This lesson had them singing, moving, and learning while instilling broader life lessons in communication and compassion – two of Carmel Central School District’s guiding characteristics for students.

“They were excited to not only learn the song but to add some sign language and gestures, also,” said Sydney Coelho, music teacher at Matthew Paterson Elementary.

The added use of sign language allowed the students to grasp and better retain the meaning of the lyrics to the song while learning new vocabulary. It also opened up a larger class discussion on what sign language is and how it is used.

Learning the signs for the song lyrics was just the beginning for these young learners who naturally craved more! They also learned how to sign “I love you" and shared ways to spread love and kindness through music every day.

“This year, it has been challenging to sing while wearing masks, but it was amazing to see how adding movement to the song really kept the students engaged,” said Coelho.

“It was wonderful to be able to safely sing a song together!”