Concord Music Program featured in the News!

Concord’s music program was recently featured in a story by our local NPR station, KUOW (94.9).  Arts and Culture reporter Marcie Sillman visited Concord last Thursday to interview staff, students, and community members to research the positive effects that Creative Advantage has had in our community.  The article features just a part of our arts programming: music.


Take a listen: KUOW How the arts can be Seattle schools’ stealth weapons in the fight for racial equity

Our school has made significant strides in the last few years.  Our K-5 music program  has grown tremendously since it was established three years ago.  We now have ukulele classes, xylophone ensembles, field trips to play recorder with the Seattle symphony, song compositions and much more!  We have joyous singing filling our school as students are reminded that their voice matters. 

“Advocates say this kind of arts programming is one way to achieve racial equity outcomes in schools that have historically struggled to help kids of color succeed. For that reason, Concord is a model for what all Seattle public schools will offer students in the next decade or so.”

But our K-5 music program is not the only art opportunity that has been growing at Concord.  Our instrumental music program has had higher enrollment than ever before.  We now have an Advanced Strings course for 2nd year instrumental students.  Classroom teachers are infusing music, art, theatre, and dance into their daily lessons.  Student voice is a growing focus as a school!  Teachers have established partnerships with organizations such as Jack Straw to compose songs with poetry and visit recording studios to record spoken word.

Our STEAM program is BOOMING!  Students have access to a high-quality arts education under the direction of the wonderful Ms. Kate Ayers.  Students are making art in the Lab and in the Maker Space. Not only that, students are learning about art and artists from many cultures, old and new, and learning to analyze and evaluate art. In Ms. Kate’s class, students are working in the makers’ space to create art using many different mediums.  Students are truly able to direct their learning. (Visit Ms. Kate’s STEAM website!)

If you would like more information about the Creative Advantage, and how its funding/resources help to support our arts programming, please reach out to me or visit the Creative Advantage website.

We at Concord are so fortunate to have a thriving arts program.  Thank you for your support.  Let’s keep creating spaces for students to embrace their creative, resilient, expressive and capable selves.


Concord Sings!

We are into the second month of school and we are singing up a storm!  This year, we are fortunate enough to have a brand new music room.  Students in Kindergarten through 5th grade are now learning in a new music space for general music.  You can see ukuleles, drums, xylophones, boomwhackers and much more available for student use.  I am looking forward to a magical and noisy year of music in this new space!


On Monday, October 9th, all students K-5 will participate in an “All School Sing” during our morning assembly.   We will join our voices together as one to sing our own version of Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World”. Students have all been learning this song in addition to other music class activities.  The lyrics of this song speak about the natural beauty in the world around us and how we can see that same beauty in the people around us.

In Kindergarten-5th grade, we have had some wonderful discussion around the things that make us stop and think “What a wonderful world!”  Here’s just a few of the items we brainstormed…

  • Our families (students listed: aunties, uncles, moms, dads, brothers, sisters, cousins, best friends that are so close that they ARE our family, and much more)
  • The night sky
  • The beautiful animals
  • Flowering trees at our houses
  • Knowing that our family loves us even if they are far away
  • Friendship
  • Our school and teachers
  • Videogames and how lucky we are to be able to play them
  • How big our world is
  • Books and libraries
  • Music and how we express ourselves
  • Food! (And specifically the food we have memories attached to)
  • Our pets
  • The sunset and the different colors that the sky can be
  • Trees changing colors

I feel very fortunate to be back at Concord this year.  Working with these bright students in our growing music program makes me think to myself “What a Wonderful World!”


Donorschoose Project Fully Funded!

For the THIRD time this year, our community has come together to support our music department.  I am overwhelmed by the generous support and kindness that all have shown for our students.   The lovely rug pictured below is now on its way to transform our music classroom!

Shown in Round

Thank you for your support in transforming our music space. Our students DESERVE high quality materials, and a dedicated space for musical learning. You have made this possible. Without your support, our music program would not have grown and flourished over the last few years. Thank you for helping to create a beautiful music space for our students. Thank you for helping us to fight the good fight. 🙂

With gratitude,
Ms. Staire


Culturally Responsive Teaching in The Seattle Public Schools Visual and Performing Arts Department

Today, arts teachers from across the Seattle Public School district will be partnering with the Council on American-Islamic Relations-WA for a unique professional development opportunity.


Islam Arts & Culture: Providing Teachers with a Pathway for Engagement

In this workshop, K-12 arts teachers will build their understanding of the culture of Islam in our community and how to engage with families around arts education. Emphasis will be placed on family engagement, with a focus on relationship building that empowers families and teachers to work together as partners in the arts learning process.  Proven tools and approaches to building effective relationships, including dialoguing about arts education will be shared as well as readily available resources to support ongoing inquiry and learning.  Question and answer opportunities will be built into the session to foster a supportive and collaborative learning environment. 


This course was developed in response to feedback received from the Culturally Responsive Teaching & Learning Survey that was administered in spring 2017.  The results of this survey showed that teachers wanted supports in being culturally responsive, especially related to racial equity, resources, and materials. This training responds to this need through the lens of Muslim culture.


  • Jasmin Samy, Civil Rights Director/Interim Executive Director Council on American-Islamic Relations-WA
  • McKenna Lux, Civil Rights Team Member Council on American-Islamic Relations-WA
  • Anita Koyier-Mwamba & Mohamed  Roble, SPS School and Family Partnerships


Student Recording

We Shall not be Moved

Our concert was in part inspired by Martin Luther King Jr. and the dream that he had for our world.  At Concord, we believe in standing up for that which we know to be right.  This song (sung by Ms. R’s first grade class) talks about how we will stand up for our beliefs, and work together to create a world that is free for all.

We hope you enjoy first grade’s performance of the song “We Shall not be Moved”


Taiko drumming and O Mochio

La clase de Ms. Barajas presento dos canciones de Japon.  El primero era un rima que se llama “O Mochio.”  La segunda cancion era nuestra version de Taiko drumming.

Esperamos que les gustan!

Ms. Baraja’s class presented two songs from Japan.  The first was a rhyme called “O Mochio.”  The second was our version of Taiko drumming.

We hope you enjoy!



O Mochio