Plugged In is based in Needham, MA. Its dual focus is to give young people a venue through which they can channel their creativity, learn to work in a group, and improve their music skills while learning about the value and importance of social activism. In addition to the Plugged In concerts at the end of each band session, you see Plugged In performing at Needham Business Association functions, the Needham Fourth of July Parade, the Pollard Middle School, and many other local events.
The teaching and learning process is a core value of Plugged in and it transcends everything we do. Through low teacher-to-student ratios, each student gets a great deal of individual attention. In addition, students teach and learn from each other – both in their own bands and from one band to another. We also teach each other about charitable organizations that need our help. We learn about the great work that others are doing around the block and around the world and try to figure out ways to help.
So many young people have no outlet for their enthusiasm and creative energy. Plugged In bands provide nurturing and support in an environment built on mutual respect and understanding. Our success is measured by how we do well, not how well we do. No matter what your musical interest or skill level, Plugged In has a place for you.
It is impossible to separate Plugged In from the causes that we embrace. The money we raise from our concerts goes directly to the charities we play for. In 2006, we raised enough money from our January concert to send our friend from Zimbabwe, Justice Makuni, to university for four years. After school, Justice plans to go back to his village and build a better future. It’s such an empowering feeling to know we played a part in this.
Whether you are a prospective Plugged In student, parent, local business, or you are just interested in the Plugged In experience we would love to hear from you. Music classes begin in February and September, and the summer session begins in July.
If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities or you would like to participate in Plugged In as a volunteer, music teacher, Board Member, or in any other way you can think of please contact us at email@example.com.
All students participating in Plugged In programming have the opportunity to participate in additional activities above and beyond their band class, private lesson or workshop. Students participating in Plugged In can access many of performance opportunities throughout the year, including our benefit concert series and local community performances. Through performances students gain the confidence and learn the skills necessary to use their music to give back to the community. Students are also invited to participate in the Plugged In Youth Board. The Youth Board lets students have a say in important decisions being made by the organization and gives them the opportunity to help guide Plugged In’s development.
One of the most important aspects of Plugged In is the emphasis placed on showing students how they can use music to better the world. The concerts at the end of each session raise money for charitable organizations chosen by the students. At the beginning of each session, we hold a Community Engage Evening at which students present to each other charities and causes that are important to them. Students explain how they learned about the charities, what needs are met by the organizations and why they feel it is important to support the organizations. At the end of the evening, they vote to determine the recipient charitable organization for the concert. Also during the evening, an adult whose work involves using the arts to effect social change speaks with the students. Our goal is to provide role models for the students of ways to include philanthropy in their lives and careers.
Plugged In students are invited to perform at many community and non-profit organization events, such as the 4th of July parade, street fairs, New Years Needham celebration, Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration, Walker School, etc. These performances are optional and voluntary. Students can perform with their bands, by themselves and/or with students from other bands.
The Youth Board is open to all Plugged In students. The goal of the Youth Board is to strengthen the Plugged In student community by fostering greater involvement of students in the programs and activities of Plugged In and giving students from different bands the opportunity to meet and get to know each other. The Youth Board typically meets one evening per month.
PIB.TV is a website where students can post video, audio and live-stream events and through pay-per-view technology use their music to raise money for causes and charitable organizations important to them.