Rhythm, Rhyme, and… Writing

Evan is a joyful, active member of his Music Clubhouse. He has always been eager to record music and try new things. “Recording songs is my favorite thing in the world,” he says. “I want to do it every day.”

The staff became curious as to why he was resistant to writing down his lyrics and why he insisted on only freestyling. When they realized that Evan also had trouble with other elements of music structure and writing, it became clear that Evan struggled with literacy in general. And, he was embarrassed to try writing in front of his peers.

His mentors created a unique approach to help him improve these skills without singling him out. Evan’s Music Clubhouse director shared the technique. “Our sessions were focused on a structured lyric writing approach for the entire group.” Combining a rhyming thesaurus with a syllable-based counting activity “provided a comfortable platform for Evan to develop his literacy skills through his passion for music.”

The best part is that Evan’s self-confidence increased. “As the program went along,” explains his Music Clubhouse director, “Evan became more comfortable reading and writing in front of his peers. He found a whole new level of understanding and appreciation for the depth and intentionality behind carefully crafted lyrics.” Evan now enjoys practicing writing using the approach he learned in the Music Clubhouse, and his literacy skills continue to improve!

“It’s always amazing to see youth grow in non-musical ways through their access to music.”