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CECE wins Telly Award for video on children’s music development

Published on June 10, 2024

CECE wins Telly Award for video on children’s music development

Video screenshot: Matthew Vizzo leads a music class with children as part of the CECE's award-winning video.

Video screenshot

Video screenshot: Group music activities are shown in the film as an important component in early childhood education.

Video screenshot: Two children have fun while taking part in a musical activity.

Eastern Connecticut State University’s Center for Early Childhood Education (CECE) recently won a Telly Award for a video involving music development in childhood education.

The video, titled “Supporting Music Development in Early Childhood Settings,” was created by Julia DeLapp, director of the Center for Teaching, Learning and Assessment, and Ken Measimer, media production specialist for Media Services. The film won a Bronze Telly Award, the CECE’s ninth Telly since 2010.

“Supporting Music Development in Early Childhood Settings” was one of three films about music and movement that DeLapp and Measimer created in spring 2023. The film also features Matthew Vizzo, university assistant for the Child and Family Development Resource Center and Kaitlin Thibodeau ’16. Communication alumna Lauren Christie ’23 co-edited the video.

In the video, Vizzo, who is a professional musician and preschool teacher, “demonstrates and explains how he engages young children in developing their musical competencies,” said Sudha Swaminathan, director of the CECE.

Telly Awards recognize “excellence in video production across a variety of technical formats,” said Swaminathan. This year’s 13,000 worldwide applicants yielded winners including “such recognized names as Adobe, NASA, National Geographic and, of course, Eastern’s CECE.”

DeLapp, who wrote the script and produced the film, credits Terry Surprenant, an early childhood music educator and former grant manager for the CECE, for conceiving the film. “(Surprenant) reached out to Matt Vizzo and arranged to interview him, and she led a few music classes herself, videotaped by Ken and/or (actor) Sean Leser,” said DeLapp.

“My ultimate goal with these videos was to promote the importance of music for young children and to help teachers realize that they can support children’s development, even if they don’t feel like they have strong music skills themselves,” said DeLapp.

By showing the importance of helping children discover the joy of making music and providing opportunities for them to do so, the video aims to help children believe in themselves musically.

“If we give young children lots of opportunities and encouragement to sing, dance and explore musical instruments,” said DeLapp, “they will develop the foundation they need to feel like confident music-makers.” Further, “musical skills are connected to many positive educational outcomes for children.”

The Telly Award is one of many rewards the video provided for its creators. “Working on the music videos was like coming home,” said DeLapp, a former music education major in college.

The video was DeLapp’s final project as director of the CECE, a post she held for 18 years. She believes the award will increase the visibility of the film and ensure that its message is heard. “The real benefit of being recognized with a Telly Award is that it will draw more educators to watch the video,” she said.

Measimer appreciated the opportunities the film created for his students. “It is gratifying for me to have student workers and interns have this accomplishment to put on their resumes,” he said. Christie, who co-edited the video, is Measimer’s former intern and has since graduated and accepted a position in Eastern’s Office of Admissions.

Written by Noel Teter