Last week my little family took a road trip to visit friends in Philadelphia. The Music Together® CD was on heavy rotation throughout our drive. During our visit, we spent the day at Longwood Gardens, which has an outdoor children’s garden with fountains, mazes and much to my surprise, an assortment of toddler-friendly percussion instruments. My son ran up to the chimes (a series of vertical metal tubes) and without any instruction from us, he picked up the mallet and began playing. I assume this is a direct result of our jam sessions during music class.
Each session of Music Together® includes two wordless songs. In the first, egg shakers are passed out and both parents and kids are encouraged to shake along to the beat. During the second,an assortment of percussion instruments are dumped into the center of the circle and the children can choose from items such as bells, drums, triangles, castanets, or rhythm sticks. In addition to these interactive sessions in class, I have been creating our own mini jam sessions at home with pots and pans for drums and wooden and metal spoons for mallets. It was very rewarding to see these efforts pay off as I watched my son interact with the instruments at the park. When he grew tired of the chimes, he moved over to the large xylophone and alternated between banging on the wooden keys and pausing to bop up and down in his version of dancing.
During our third class this week class our teacher, Miss Alicia, reminded us that you can sing your sentences when talking to your child. I tried this out during our evening fussy time and not only did it become a great distraction tool, but my son responded by singing (he sang the word “no”) and matching my pitch (at least he was in key while being difficult)! My obvious excitement made him excited and we created a new getting-dressed-in-our-pajamas game. As I mentioned in last week’s blog, Music Together® has taught me how to incorporate music activities that are fun as well as developmentally appropriate into our daily routine. After three sessions I can definitely see a change in my son’s interest and response to music.
Music Together® is a parent-child music class of mixed ages from birth to age five. Classes focus on interactive play where both the caregiver and child share songs, play instruments, and participate in rhythm chants and movement activities. Classes of mixed ages foster family-style learning where the younger children watch and imitate the older ones, and the older children learn by leading the younger ones. Meryl's Music and Arts Centers offer a variety of classes for children (from birth to age seven) at studios in Harwich, S. Yarmouth, Bourne, Eastham, and Sandwich.
Disclaimer: This review was made possible by Meryl's Music & Arts. All thoughts are the blogger's own.
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