"Trash Can Band" makes beautiful music on a budget - AmericaNowNews.com


"Trash Can Band" makes beautiful music on a budget

When you think of a school band, you typically think of instruments like drums or a trumpet, but those instruments can be expensive. A tambourine can cost as much as $50, and that's money schools often don't have.

The students at Harbison West Elementary School were plagued with that very issue, so when a grant for musical instruments didn't strike a chord, teacher Dawn Reitz wouldn't be silenced.

"Drums are expensive and trash cans aren't, so that's kind of where the idea came from," said Reitz.

That's right: Trash cans and other household items as percussion instruments, creating what the school affectionately calls The Trash Can Band.

"These guys are so great because they're so young," said Reitz. "They're fearless. They love to experiment."

At times, they've been skeptical.

"On some like the pork rind buckets when I first learned, when I first saw them, I thought to myself, 'Really can we just play a can or something more appropriate, not appropriate,' but something other than that, but I was amazed," said student Michael Brewer.

Not everything has worked. The paper tubes took some time.

"At first, we thought when we are beating them with the drum stick we could just lay them on the ground and play it, but that didn't work," said Isaac Brewer.

Cost-effective instruments and funny looks aside, The Trash Can Band has brought together third, fourth, and fifth graders that typically wouldn't interact.

"We just became friends sooner or later," said J.C. Marks.

"Ms. Reitz brings it to extreme levels," said Michael.

It's those extreme levels that are teaching the students rhythm and math, not to mention independent thinking and how to work together as a group.

"I think it's something that they're proud of," said Reitz. "It's really cool. I think they take a lot of pride in the fact that they're in The Trash Can Band."

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