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Music Programs at PS 130

Ms Sorenson Music Page


Helen Sorenson

Music Teacher K-2
Room 407, Lower School

Helen Sorenson has been teaching Pre-K – 5 music for 18 years.  She has been teaching at PS 130 for 10 years.  This year she will be teaching grades Pre-K – 2 in the keyboard lab at the PS 130 Lower School.  Ms Sorenson has a B.A. in music from the University of St. Thomas, where she studied classical guitar.  She also plays folk guitar, banjo, and piano


Jacob Arnold for Music Page


Jacob Arnold

Music Teacher Grades 3 – 5
Room 435, Upper School

(The new Music Suite in the Caton Avenue building includes two practice rooms, instrument storage lockers, and state-of-the-art educational technology.)

Mr. Arnold has been a teacher and clinician in Pre-K – 12 music for more than 15 years.  Jacob has been working in the New York City public schools for over ten years, running band programs and teaching classroom music.  He has a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the University of Kansas and an M. A. in Music Education from NYU.  His pedagogical approach stems from the foundation that anyone can sing and anyone can learn an instrument.

In School Programs


Ms. Sorenson and Mr. Arnold both teach Pre-K classes.  They meet with these classes in their classroom, where they do a variety of activities: songs, chants, finger plays, movement , and dance.

Kindergarten and Grade 1

Music and the Brain
Kindergarten and 1st Grade students participate in Music and the Brain, a curriculum for group keyboard instruction.  Kindergarten students receive keyboard instruction twice a week and Grade 1 once a week.  These students learn the basics of music theory and how to read music using rhythm cards, keyboard cards and movement.  They then learn to play songs on the keyboard.

Grade 2

Musical Explorers
Students participate in the Musical Explorers curriculum where they explore singing and moving to multicultural music.  In the fall they learn about rhythmic and melodic patterns in Greek, Malian Traditional and Classical Indian music.  They attend an interactive concert featuring the artists they have studied at Carnegie Hall in December.

In the spring they learn to sing and move to Puerto Rican, Cuban and Salsa rhythms jazz and Southeast Asian music.  They attend another interactive concert at Carnegie Hall in May featuring the artists they have studied.  Students will also continue working on the Music and the Brain curriculum on the keyboard.

Grades 3 through 5

Each Monday, Tuesday, and Friday Mr. Arnold will guide every 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade class through the year’s music curriculum.

Third grade classes will get the chance to play recorders for the first time this year, and will start their way through Ed Sueta’s “Be A Recorder Star” method book.  Units of study include: Recorder basics, Instrument Families, Music and Expression.

Fourth grade classes will continue studying the recorder, working in the “Be A Recorder Star” method book, and will dig deeper into music theory.  Units of study include:  Intermediate Recorder Technique, World Music Styles, and Basics of Music Theory.

Fifth graders will be learning the Science behind Music Instruments, take a look at Program Music, further their recorder study, as well as spend some time preparing music for their Graduation ceremony in June!

After School Elective Programs

Guitar Club

Ms. Sorenson leads our Guitar Club.  Guitar Club is for grades 3 – 5 and consists of a maximum of 30 students.  There are no auditions.  Students are invited to join based on their ability, classroom behavior, and desire to learn guitar.  Students who were in the Guitar Club the previous year, are automatically invited to join again.

Ms. Sorenson meets with a Beginner group from 2:50 PM – 3:50 PM on Fridays, and an Intermediate group from 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM on Fridays at the Upper School.

After School Band Program

Mr. Arnold leads our new After School Band Program.  Students are evaluated to determine who would benefit most from this program.  It is by invitation only, starting with the students who were in Mr. Gozzo’s band program last year.  It will be primarily for 5th graders, with some spots made available to 4th graders based on availability.

Brass and Percussion meet on Wednesdays from 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM; Woodwinds on Thursdays from 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM; Full Band on Fridays from 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM.  Students are strongly urged to attend on their instrument specific day as well as when the entire band meets on Friday.  Instruments are provided by the school.

Arts Connection: The Young Talent Program at PS 130

Arts Connection’s Young Talent Program is a comprehensive program of talent development that has been bringing an array of artistic and academic services to New York City Public Schools since 1978.  At PS 130, Master percussionists Ruben Gonzalez and assistant Sean Dixon provide students in grades 3 through 5 with hands-on, in-depth instruction to percussion music and the cultures from which the music originates.

Students are selected for advanced instruction through a unique talent identification procecss involving classroom teachers and professional artists.  All third graders participate in four music sessions where they are observed while deeply engaged in music activities.  The criteria assessed by the artists and classroom teachers includes: musical skills (rhythm, perception of sound, coordination), motivation (enthusiasm, ability to focus, perseverance), and creativity (expressiveness, composition and improvisation).  The students chosen to join the Core 3 Ensemble go on to receive rigorous weekly arts instruction for up to three years – being part of Core 4 in 4th grade and Core 5 in 5th grade.