The world’s first a cappella Hindi group, Penn Masala, taught underprivileged students at a Saki Naka school how to jam. Stating that music is used for the holistic development, the band says it should be integrated into classroom teaching.
Penn Masala, an a cappella group formed in 1996 by students at the University of Pennsylvania, visited the Shivner Vidya Mandir school on Monday to teach the underprivileged children from nearby slums studying there how to beat-box and play an air guitar. The school is a part of the Teach for India programme.
“I love music, and this is the first time I realised that one does not need instruments to make music. The group taught me to make all the sounds made by a drum, guitar, and other instruments. It was a fun session,” said 9-year-old Pranay Kalokha, a student.
“Since a cappella music does not require instruments, it can actually be used in classroom teaching to make lessons attractive to students and hold their attention. Unfortunately, in India, children are not encouraged to take up performing arts such as music. We need to promote such arts in schools and encourage students to continue with it even when they grow up,” said Anil Chitrapu, a member of Penn Masala.
Penn Masala, along with Teach for India, is going to work together on various such projects. The group will also conduct fundraising activities for the organisation.