A passion of former college teacher Lorraine Ray is teaching children. It was this passion that founded Kinderchoir.

Containing singers from K4 to third grade, Kinderchoir is a music project that Ray founded last year on Dec. 12 – 12/12/12.

It has since sung with the all-women a cappella group M'Aiken Music and high school ensemble Belles Canto.

On Monday, the young group will put on its first holiday concert “Do You Hear What I Hear?”

“This will be the first concert … where they are hosting,” Ray said. “It's a big undertaking for kids this age to prepare a whole program like this.”

The performance is free at 6:45 p.m. at Aiken's First Presbyterian Church, located at 224 Barnwell Ave. N.W..

Ray is teaching her students some classic numbers for this concert like selections from the Hal Hopson cantata “Come Ye Faithful,” the Christian children's song “The Friendly Beasts” and the German song “Stille Nacht,” or “Silent Night.”

“They've learned a lot of music,” Ray said.

M'Aiken Music and Augusta Preparatory Day School's all-girls trio will also perform. Pianist Pat Adams will accompany the show.

It was during this past spring's “On the Road” concert that Ray met Adams. The pianist was then performing with Belles Canto.

“I really liked how she accompanied the young people and the way she played,” Ray said.

Kinderchoir has changed a bit since its start.

“We are half new and half old, which is delightful,” Ray said. “It took us a light while to get to know each other and bond together but I think now its a pretty cohesive group.”

Caroline Weaver has been with the group since the beginning.

“It's really fun, and she always teaches for us to do it right – where we need to be taught,” she said.

Dylan LaPlace, another year-long member, and Weaver are looking forward to performing “Jingle Bell Rock;” while newer members Jaden Coffey and Coletta Pieters like to sing “Do You Hear What I Hear?”

Ray has taught for over 14 years. She serves as the preschool music teacher at First Presbyterian Church.

“Working with children's music has become a ‘second career,'” she said to the Aiken Standard earlier this year. “Teaching young children is refreshing, delightful and fulfilling. I also have been impressed with their talent, their pure voices and their enjoyment of performing.” 

Donations for the group can be made at the concert.

For more information on Kinderchoir and the concert, email Ray at aikenkinderchoir@gmail.com.