Oak Forest High School Jazz Band Practices Online

Oak Forest High School Jazz Band Practices Online
By: Jake Beckman, CBS 2 Chicago

Members of the jazz band at Oak Forest High School aren’t allowed to practice together in person due to the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, the musicians took to technology and did the next best thing.

While practicing social distancing, students keep the groove alive from their own homes and work spaces. After students played their parts separately,  Nick Rojek, a music teacher at Oak Forest High School, compiled their parts using iMovie. CBS 2 spoke with Rojek about the process:

Jake Beckman (JB):

Can you share the process of how the students and teacher organized this?

Nick Rojek:

When we were given the task of creating some E-Learning Lessons for the students, I did not want to depart from the performance aspects of our music classes. We are fortunate to have a strong performing arts program in our district and I wanted the students to keep up their skills rather than having them answer questions online. After posting some new music for the students to work on and submit, the idea just came together. With the uncertainty of the next few weeks and the potential of having to delay or cancel our annual Jazz Night Fundraiser, we thought it would be nice to at least perform a few of our numbers for the parents and community over the internet.

JB:

How do they communicate while being out of school?

Nick Rojek: 

Our music classes are all set up on Google Classroom. Most of our assignments are shared and discussed through this platform in addition to email.

JB:

Do they use their own video equipment?

Nick Rojek: 

All of the recordings were done through their school-issued iPad/personal cell phones and uploaded to Google Classroom. From there, I had aligned the recordings using GarageBand.
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