The Empire State Youth Orchestra's goal behind the nonprofit organization's after school program, called CHIME, is to build positive characteristics in children through the use of music. Karen Tararache reports.

SCHENECTADY, N. Y. -- Empire State Youth Orchestra Music Director, Helen Cha-Pyo said, "What would it look like if we tried to do artistic things, musical things, performance oriented things every day as we teach them how to read and write and do math? What would happen to their entire learning experience?"

Starting this Fall, The Empire Youth Orchestra's after school program, "CHIME," intends to find out the answer with sixty students at Yates Elementary.

Adrian Catucci, a Yates Elementary School teacher said, "They're just so excited and they have such an appetite for music."

"To use the idea of an orchestra and playing together as a metaphor of how we can work and really just live effectively together in a community," said Rebecca Calos, the Empire State Youth Orchestra executive director.

Calos said using music and string instruments helps create positive behaviors in children at a young age both academically and socially.

"We'll do a lot of fundamental music, music writing, composition, improvisation. So it should be a wonderful balance of music roundedness not just music education but teaching them life skills," said Cha-Pyo.

"Things like responsibility, perseverance, determination," said Laurence Spring, Schenectady School District superintendent.

For now CHIME will be held at Yates five days a week for two hours and forty-five minutes a day, but organizers hope they can extend their reach to other schools in the Capital Region.  

"In the end we may end up with some amazing musicians but really the goal is to end up with some amazing citizens," said Carlos. 

Click here to learn more about CHIME.