TAMIU Professor Contributes to Music Magazine

TAMIU Professor Contributes
to Children's Music Magazine

A local musician and educator is helping children better understand and celebrate Cinco de Mayo around the country through music. Dr. Gilberto D. Soto, associate professor of music education at Texas A&M International University, co-authored a song and developed a lesson plan for the May/June 2006 issue of John Jacobson's Music Express Magazine.

"Viva el Cinco de Mayo," written by Dr. Soto and internationally recognized music educator and clinician John Jacobson, tells of the Battle of Puebla in 1862 where "many lives were changed forever by the courage of a few," and tells the children, "We sing because we're free!" The song also invites neighbors to "rise and sing the glory of heroes in ev'ry tale."

Although the five years of struggle against the French that continued after the Battle of Puebla aren't included in the song, Soto's lesson plan includes the rest of the history lesson in a condensed version for intermediate students to understand. The plan also includes suggestions for materials that are traditional items of the state of Puebla, México.

Music Express, published by the Hal Leonard Corporation, is a unique music education resource that supplies five new songs in each issue, provides new activities and teaching strategies and keeps teachers updated on issues facing music educators nationwide.

Soto is author of ¡Fiesta De Canciones! and co-author of Multilevel Strategies for English Language Learners and Spotlight on Music. He teaches courses for music and children as well as being in charge of the guitar program in the department of fine and performing arts and the popular Classical Guitar Ensemble. He received his B.Ed. from Universidad Autonoma del Noreste in México, B.A. from Abilene Christian University and his M.M. and Ph.D. from University of Southern Mississippi.

For more information, please contact Soto at 326.3046, e-mail gsoto@tamiu.edu or visit offices in Center for the Fine and Performing Arts, room 216A.

University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday - Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu