What will we do in class?
Most simply, we’ll sing, dance, and play! Each week, your registered Music Together® teacher will lead the class through about a dozen songs and rhythmic rhymes from the semester’s collection of music which includes a wide variety of musical styles, melodies and rhythms. We’ll sing, dance, explore finger chants and creative large movement, and play with instruments.
Classes are intended to be relaxed, playful and experience-based, not performance oriented, supporting the unique learning styles, developmental levels and temperaments of all participants. Everyone in the class community will have opportunities to create and improvise - making up new words to songs, suggesting movement ideas, creating rhythm patterns, or silly sounds. Above all else, we’ll have fun while creating a rich and dynamic musical community.
What makes Music Together unique?
You might have heard that at Music Together, we’re serious about having fun. Underlying this fun is the most important aspect of our program - research. In 1987, Music Together pioneered the concept of a research-based, developmentally appropriate program. To this day, the lab school in Princeton, NJ, in addition to the research of others, continues to inform the decisions made about all things Music Together, including program delivery, content and teacher training. You may take comfort in the fact that from the moment you walk into class, everything has been created with an educational purpose.
Our research-based curriculum develops music skills, nurtures creativity, self-expression and confidence while also supporting language, cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development.
Is my child too young for music class?
All children are musical. They’re born making sounds and moving. Their natural aptitude for music develops when they’re part of a rich musical environment. In fact, when given a supportive music environment, children learn to sing and dance as naturally, and in much the same way, as they learn to walk and talk. You wouldn’t wait to talk to your baby until you were sure they could answer you, would you? Music is a wholly integrated skill and a wonderful way to play and bond with your baby.
May I bring my 3 year old as well as my 6 month old to the same class?
Not only ‘may you’, but we encourage you to! Research shows that children in early-childhood learn best in a mixed-age environment. Read more about it here.
What is my role in the class and why is it important for me to be there?
Young children learn through play and experimentation and by watching and listening to the grown-ups they love. Setting an example as an enthusiastic participator in music activities is the best way for a parent or caregiver to set a child on the road to a lifelong love of music. Parents don’t need any special musical skills - just the desire to play and have fun with their children! Regardless of your own musical ability, as a parent or caregiver, you have the greatest impact on your child’s music development.
I can’t carry a tune in a bucket! Won't I ruin my child musically if I sing to her?
Not at all! We promise that you will not hurt your child's musical development by singing to them, even if you are not always in tune, or can’t keep a steady beat. Children will hear plenty of "in tune" music from other sources, but it’s your voice that your child loves most. You’ve probably noticed that whatever you do, your child wants to do too (the good and the not-so-good stuff). While we, as teachers, are able to help your child learn musical skills, only you can teach your child to love and value music.
What happens after we complete a semester?
There are nine song collections in all. A different song collection is used each semester, so when you register for your next semester you can look forward to twenty-five new songs and chants to add to your child’s musical library. The music will be taught through similar kinds of activities, but because your child will be at a different place developmentally, an activity can be exciting to them either because of its familiarity, or because they can grasp it in a new way.
What if I didn't start in the Fall? Have we missed something?
Because the semesters are non-sequential and the activities are designed to be accessible to a child at their own developmental stage, a child can enter the Music Together® program at the beginning of any semester and at any age.
My child just sits there in class - OR - My child just wanders around in class. Is my child bored?
There are many different learning styles. Some children may be visual learners who need to watch before they experiment on their own. Others are auditory learners who are listening, even when they’re across the room. Kinaesthetic learners need to move! Tell a kinaesthetic learner that they can't move and you’re actually interfering with their learning process. A child's learning in class happens in a multi-layered way - through active participation, watching others move, experimenting with instruments and even by just being there and listening to you sing. Children learn differently than adults - they learn instinctively and constantly. Instead of waiting for your child to do something in class, let yourself go and do it yourself. Then, watch and listen at home, and you’ll see and hear just how much your child is learning and absorbing in class!
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