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    SCITUATE

    Town’s youngsters being taught to strum along

    Scituate's fourth and fifth graders are learning to play the ukulele as part of a new elementary school music program.
    Scituate Education Foundation
    Scituate's fourth- and fifth-graders are learning to play the ukulele.

    The fourth- and fifth-graders in Scituate are learning to play the ukulele, as part of a new program in all four elementary schools.

    “The ukuleles have revolutionized the general music curriculum,” said music teacher Peter Mundt, explaining that the simple stringed instruments allow students to understand harmonic theory and chord structure and function.

    “I’ve been teaching music for 25 years, and never before have I been able to have children play chords to accompany their singing,” he said. “And it’s relevant to the real world. ... Most kids don’t grow up and play the xylophone, for example, but here’s an instrument you can play for the rest of your life.”

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    Mundt said almost all the students have quickly learned how to play the small four-string instruments, which require less fine motor skills than the bigger guitar.

    The Scituate Education Foundation paid for the ukuleles, as part of its new grant program.

    seltzjohanna@gmail.com