’burg and Beyond

In Lewisburg and far afield, Bucknell’s students and staff make a positive and palpable difference.
Elle Chrampanis ’24 puts her child-development studies into practice.
Photo: Emily Paine
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Elle Chrampanis ’24 puts her child-development studies into practice.

" "Lewisburg, Pa.
You might not expect a college student’s favorite people to be less than half her age. But as the eldest of six siblings, Elle Chrampanis ’24 is fascinated by the wide-eyed wonder of children — and invested in nurturing their growth.

It’s a passion that informs her studies at Bucknell, where she’s examining child development through local student-teaching opportunities.

What She’s Investigating
A psychology and music double-major from Little Silver, N.J., Chrampanis is crafting an honors thesis on the impact of music education on children’s mental and emotional well-being.

“Things like active engagement, relationships and achievement are key to building confidence and happiness,” she says. “I’m especially interested in how music can be an avenue for kids to develop these elements of positive psychology early in their lives.”

Last fall, a Bucknell course allowed Chrampanis to take her research into the field. As an assistant teacher at the River Valley Nature School in Lewisburg, she led kindergarteners in music lessons and outdoor expeditions designed to encourage hands-on learning and exploration.

What She’s Discovering
From sitting “criss-cross applesauce” on the floor to drafting whimsical lyrics, the music education curriculum at Bucknell challenges Chrampanis to put herself in the shoes of her students.

“We do a lot of experimenting in class, whether it’s playing boomwhackers or making up a song about potatoes. Every activity reveals something that we can apply as teachers,” she says. “It’s awesome to take what I’m learning and share it with kids in a real classroom.”
— Brooke Thames