Since 2017, JOY has been devoted to creating access to music and strings education to youth in Yamhill County. In collaboration with Yamhill County schools and their districts, we provide both In-School and After-School violin and orchestral programming to elementary-aged youth. JOY is a member organization of El Sistema USA and prioritizes its sites and programs to target students and school communities with high rates of underserved populations.
To date, JOY provides both In-School Violin and After-School Orchestra programs at Edwards Elementary in Newberg, which serve grades K-5. As a result of an increase of community interest, JOY will begin the Kindergarten In-School Violin program at Newby and Sue Buel Elementary Schools in McMinnville in Fall 2022. JOY takes inspiration from the Suzuki Method in the style of teaching and progression of skills.
The Junior Orchestra of Yamhill County (JOY) transforms the lives of underserved youth in Yamhill County through high-caliber, intensive orchestral music instruction through emphasizing teamwork and collaboration, promoting student creativity, and engaging the community.
JOY is inspired by the El Sistema movement, which started in Venezuela in 1975, to harness the power of music for social change. JOY’s vision is to establish youth orchestra programs throughout Yamhill County.
JOY was inspired by the El Sistema movement, which started in 1975 in Venezuela by Dr. Jose Antonio Abreu. Because of Dr. Abreu’s successful work bringing music to underserved communities, El Sistema-inspired programs now operate in many countries around the world, including the United States. JOY is a member of El Sistema USA and is one of two El Sistema inspired programs that operates in the state of Oregon. For more information on El Sistema, follow the links below:
“Playing music is the brain’s equivalent of a full-body workout… playing an instrument engages practically every area of the brain at once. As in any other workout, disciplined, structured practice in playing music strengthens those brain functions, alllowing us to apply that strength to other activities.” (from Laura I. Saunder’s “Your Brain on Music: The Cognitive Effects of Music Education on the Brain”)
Music education is important for all people because it actively uses many parts of the brain at once. In engaging the many parts of our brains, we strengthen other skills such as focus, analysis, decision-making, planning, and attention to detail. In addition, participation in music groups oriented towards excellence also strengthens community and cultivates social responsibility. The cognitive and social benefits brought together lead to improving student outcomes in school attendance and academic performance.
“In its essence, the orchestra is much more than artistic structures. They are examples and schools of social life, because to sing and play together means to intimately coexist toward perfection and excellence, following a strict discipline of organization and coordination in order to seek the harmonic interdependence of voices and instruments. That’s how they build a spirit of solidarity and fraternity among them, develop their self-esteem and foster the ethical and aesthetical values related to music in all its senses. This is why music is important in the awakening of sensibility, in the forging of values and in the training of youngsters to teach other kids.” -Jose Antonio Abreu, founder of El Sistema in Venezuela
“From the minute a child’s taught how to play an instrument, he’s no longer poor. He becomes a child in progress headed for a professional level, who’ll later become a full citizen.” -JAA
“I believe that to confront such a crisis [of spirituality], only art and religion can give proper answers to humanity, to mankind’s deepest aspirations, and to the historic demands of our times. Education– the synthesis of wisdom and knowledge– is the means to strive for a more perfect, more aware, more noble and more just society.” -JAA