National program brings the blues to Machesney Park Elementary - – Rockford’s News Leader

National program brings the blues to Machesney Park Elementary


The Crossroads Blues Society and Machesney Park Elementary teamed up Wednesday to give students a taste of the blues, in a positive way.

The Blues in the Schools (BITS) program helps kids understand the rural and urban African-American culture through the music it produced. The program taught students the history of the movement and even let their classrooms create their own songs.

"We educate the kids in the value of music in their educational process," Crossroads Blues Society member Joe Poluyanskis said. "By bringing these musicians here, they get the history of the music, plus they get to hear the music performed by fine artists."

The group has presented the program to about 37,000 kids in schools all over the Rockford area since its inception 12 years ago.

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