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Sophiasburgh school is ‘Small But Mighty’ in CBC Music Class Challenge

Students at Sophiasburgh Central School have risen to the challenge – the CBC Music Class Challenge – in hopes to secure a prize of musical instruments.

Every fall, CBC Music, in association with MusiCounts, the charity of the Juno Awards, launches the contest to engage music classes across the country with Canadian music.

The project goals are to help children learn Canadian music in the classroom, draw attention to exceptional work music teachers are doing and reinforce the importance of music in a well-rounded education.

Misu Burns, the school’s French and music teacher for the Grades 7/8 ukulele music class, initiated and co-ordinated the entry.

Since the school is small with just 127 students, Burns selected the song ‘Small But Mighty’ by Ginalina (Gina Lam) from 23 Canadian choices in this year’s challenge.

And just two days into her job, Sam Hirst, who teaches the Grades 3/4 music class, jumped in to assist with the challenge to perform and make a video – all by following COVID-19 safety protocols.

Hirst also taught the sign language. Burns taught the rest of the classes with a combination of singing, playing ukulele and movement.

“I had worked with Caleb Hutton at Back 40 Productions before, and facilitated the technical direction with him,” noted Hirst. “It helps also that his kids attend the school and he was keen to contribute his time and expertise. A commendable community effort.”

The Grades 7/8 class at Sophiasburgh had been playing the ukulele since September 2021.

“Learning Ginalina’s Small But Mighty for the CBC Music Class Challenge was indeed a challenge, but it also proved to be very rewarding as the students improved with each class and all their hard work really paid off. Our school may be small but we are mighty in heart and spirit!”

Lyrics Small But Mighty by Canadian singer/songwriter Ginalina:

Verse 1
Every child, they have a name
Every spark can be a flame
One idea can bloom to fame
Small but mighty
Every step can be a start
Every word can touch a heart
Everyone can play a part
Small but mighty
We are small but we are mighty
We are small but we are mighty

Verse 2
Every seed can be a tree
Every thought can wander free
Every one can choose to be
Small but mighty
And every star can be a light
Every dream can take to flight
As we are, we’re shining bright
Small But Mighty

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  1. Dennis Fox says:

    SM – I think you need to read this article again – the title of the article with the word “Challenge” indicates that it is a contest. The first sentence clearly states – ” the CBC Music Class Challenge – in hopes to secure a prize of musical instruments.” – which again confirms that it is a competition. The fact that it is sponsored by CBC and the Juno Awards charity should ring the alarm bells that these instruments cannot be attained through the current level of government funding. The cut backs in educational funding in Ontario (as well as other provinces) has been well reported on – so there can be no argument about that.

    My point is – kids’ education should not have to depend on winning contests nor should they have to ask for charity to provide them with basic equipment – like musical instruments! The adults in our society need to keep well informed as what government is doing – particularly to our children.

  2. SM says:

    Can’t let this one go. There is no suggestion in this story that the school is competing because it does not have instruments or is underfunded. The CBC program offers an opportunity for the children involved to work together on a project and perhaps win a prize. Good work kids. Hope you had fun making your video. Good luck in the competition.

  3. Dennis Fox says:

    As I have stated earlier, I ma very proud of these kids and teachers. However, I find it unfortunate that the school has to compete in the hope of getting new instruments. With properly funded schools, these instruments would be available to many more students. It has been shown through many studies that subjects such as music, art, drama, phys. ed. shop and home economics develop the students mind in a much greater way than just reading, writing and math do – and yet these are the courses that are so often cancelled due to the lack of funding. It shouldn’t be this way.

  4. Pronica Janikowski says:

    This was great. The CBC Challenge program is a great way to get kids engaged with music.
    Congratulations to the teachers and students. Good luck to them.

  5. Janlyn Green says:

    Wonderful, absolutely wonderful!

  6. Ruth Mace says:

    So impressed with the music, the students and the presentation of the video. This shows what teamwork and integrated learning can accomplish. Well Done!!

  7. CountyProud says:

    A delightful feel good story. These young people should be very proud of their accomplishment and know the community is behind them all the way.

  8. Cheryl Anderson says:

    That is just marvelous! I hope they win, but even if not it is a wonderful example of a small rural school engaging all the students in a great inclusive project.

  9. Dennis Fox says:

    What a wonderful group of kids and teachers – they do the County proud! This proves the value of public education – regardless of the size of the school, mixing the kids from all backgrounds builds strength and brings out the best in them and in all of us!

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