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How to Use the Curriculum

Musical Explorers are students and teachers who will
  • meet artists representing diverse musical styles and cultures from around the world
  • sing and move to the artists’ songs
  • make connections among the artists’ music, their cultures, and New York City’s diverse communities
  • learn fundamental musical concepts

Become a Musical Explorers Teacher

Follow these steps to become a Musical Explorers teacher and implement the full curriculum in your classroom.
  • Register for the program to become a part of our teacher network and receive regular updates, support from Carnegie Hall staff, and special opportunities.
  • Choose the program that you want to teach.
  • Participate in the online professional development session for that program.
  • Implement the curriculum in your classroom.
  • Host a culminating digital concert experience, utilizing the on-demand video filmed at Carnegie Hall.

Get to Know the Materials

Each Musical Explorers program contains three units, each devoted to one of our Musical Explorers genres. Every unit has its own resource page with two lessons that each focus on a song. The lessons guide you through the process of learning the songs, as well as teaching relevant musical concepts and exploring the cultural context. Each lesson includes transcriptions in Western notation to assist in learning the music, but please note that these are best approximations for diverse traditions that may use different tuning systems or emphasize improvisation. When learning the music, let your ears and the recordings be your guide, and be prepared for live variations in the digital concert experience. There are multiple activities within each lesson; you can choose among them to best suit the needs of your classroom. Additional features can be found within each lesson, including the following:

  • Audio Tracks: Audio tracks for each song.
  • Videos: Introductory videos for the artists and their music.
  • Resources for Teachers: Each artist’s resource page provides background information about the musical genre and culture. Some of these resources are intended to be shared with students; others are for teachers who may want to explore further on their own.
  • Creative Extensions: Creative extensions are designed to deepen the exploration of repertoire, culture, and musical concepts.
  • Literacy Extensions: Each unit identifies picture books related to the artist’s music and culture that you can read with your students.
  • Musical Word Wall: We encourage you to build a word wall and add vocabulary words as they are introduced in the lessons.

Browse Programs

Pathways for Teachers

There are three suggested pathways for teaching the Musical Explorers curriculum, depending on the age and level of your students and the amount of time you can dedicate to the program. Teachers may present the three units within each semester in any order that fits their curriculum.

A teacher plays keyboard in front of her class


(Minimum requirements for concert participation)

Meet the artists by using your teacher and student guides and the Meet the Artist videos found at carnegiehall.org/MusicalExplorers. Listen to both songs of each artist. Learn the parts of the songs that the students will sing at the concert along with any movements that accompany the songs.

Two students clasp hands


(If you have more time)

Try out some of the additional activities provided in each unit. There are musical activities as well as activities focused on visual art, social studies, literacy, etc. Choose the activities that speak to you and fit your classroom needs.

Two students laughing together


(If you have a lot more time)

Go deeper! If there is a genre that your students particularly love, listen to some of the additional music suggested by the artists or go on a related field trip; you’ll find additional resources on the Introduction page at the beginning of each unit. You can also dig into the activities highlighted in Core Activities by going on sound- discovery walks or creating an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink orchestra.

Options for Teachers of Students with Special Needs

  • Students can participate in Musical Explorers in a variety of ways and may learn the songs by singing, moving, and clapping. You may also want to focus on smaller sections of the songs. Since you know your students best, allow them to participate in ways that will help them feel the most successful.
  • Encourage students to engage with the music using tangible objects, such as handmade instruments (e.g., cups with beans for shakers), rhythm sticks, and drums.
  • Allow time for students to experience the music and repeat as often as necessary. The lessons outlined in this curriculum may take additional time and span more than one class period. Use one-step directions and visuals as often as possible to help students understand the concepts.
  • Some visual aids are provided within the curriculum and at the Musical Explorers concerts, but you may wish to provide additional resources to help your students engage with the material. If you have ideas for elements to include in future curricula, please send them to musicalexplorersdigital@carnegiehall.org.

The Programs

Program One

  • Georgian Folk with Ilusha
  • Freedom Songs with Imani Uzuri
  • Haitian with Emeline

Program Two

  • Argentine Folk with Sofía R. and Sofia T.
  • Native American with Martha
  • South African Zulu with Bongi and Tshidi

Program Three

  • Greek Folk with Magda
  • Malian Traditional with Yacouba
  • Indian Classical with Falu

Program Four

  • Jazz with Brianna
  • Bomba and Plena with Juan and Julia
  • Brazilian with Fabiana

Program Five

  • Cumbia with Gregorio
  • Armenian Folk with Zulal
  • Hip Hop with Soul Science Lab

This program includes select activities for grades 3–5.

Program Six

  • Bluegrass with Michael
  • Chinese Traditional with Qian Yi
  • Iraqi Folk with Layth

Program Seven

  • Georgian Folk with Ilusha
  • Native American with Martha
  • South African Zulu with Bongi and Tshidi

Program Eight

  • Son Jarocho with the Villalobos Brothers
  • Sicilian Folk with Julia
  • Calypso with Etienne

This program includes select activities for grades 3–5.

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