San Antonio has the highest poverty rate out of the 25 largest metro areas in the country with nearly twice as many economically disadvantaged students than the statewide average (US Census, 2019). Musical Sprouts is an innovative educational engagement program that introduces under-resourced children to distant cultures and tests the efficacy of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math curricula in partnership with the University of Texas.
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Musical Sprouts is an educational program that measures the impact of STEAM curricula taught through the media of music and art in partnership with UT Health Science Center.
The program consists of 3 segments per school year. Each segment contains a Pretest, a Kids to Concert performance, 5 STEAM lessons, and a Posttest. The lessons are designed to teach aspects of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math as a bridge of the various academic fields within the specific country or culture of study. The segments are a journey that takes them from an introduction to the culture to a full immersion of the culture within the STEAM framework.
For the past 4 years, Musical Sprouts has introduced separate distinct cultures to a growing number of greater San Antonio elementary schools.
Starting in 2016, Dr. Eric Miller funded the program for 2 years for 1 control and 1 treatment school. Starting with 3rd grade students, Musical Sprouts then followed these same students into 4th and 5th grade. In 2018, Musical Bridges Around The World received a generous grant from the Greehey Family Foundation for Sprouts to expand to 4 treatment schools, which followed the same model beginning with 3rd grade.
Research was also conducted during this time to calculate the impact of the program, implementing a three-year study consisting of the 1 control school and 4 treatment schools. Following the students from grade 3 to 5, the study hypothesized that treatment schools students would show improvement in TEKS comprehension, multicultural knowledge, better attendance, better conducts, better STAAR grades, and improvement in English language development.
In 2019, Musical Bridges Around the World was awarded a High Impact Grant from Impact San Antonio, which allowed the program to expand to 10 treatment schools.
In early 2020, Musical Sprouts curriculum delivery shifted from printed material to an online eBook format because of the COVID-19 outbreak. This format has proven to be a more accessible option even as students return back to in-person classrooms.
Click Here To See Sprouts Test Results
For 2021-22 season, Musical Sprouts will implement a newly established curriculum in the following school districts:
- Devine ISD
- Northeast ISD
- San Antonio ISD
- Southwest ISD
- South San ISD
Students will learn about three main segments in this school year:
- African American
Each segments is broken up in the calendar into 4 main parts:
- Kids to Concerts performance (virtual or in-person)
- Once-a-week lessons for 3-5 weeks
As we move forward into the future of Musical Sprouts, we continue to implement greater plans in partnership with educators around San Antonio and beyond!
Partnership with University of Texas System
Musical Bridges Around The World has partnered with the University of Texas San Antonio: Health Science Center, College of Education & Human Development; and South Central Area Health Education Center to conduct academic research study measuring test result data for the upcoming season of Musical Sprouts.
Belinda Flores, Ph.D.
and Human Development
Becky Huang, Ph.D.
Paula Winkler, M.Ed.
Director of South Central AHEC
“The students kept asking me all day when were you going to come back because they loved the lesson.”
MRS. BRUNO (4th-Grade Teacher)
Kriewald Elementary School
Devine Intermediate School
Kriewald Elementary School