The Community Music & Arts Network is offering free sample classes for the Winter and Spring 2013 Music Together® early childhood mixed age music and movement program. Parents and caregivers and children from birth to age seven are welcome to participate in this award-winning developmentally appropriate, research based, internationally acclaimed program.
Demonstration classes will be held at the Hobart Activity Center, between Pine and River Streets on Wednesday, December 12th at 9:15 am and on Saturday, December 15th at 10:15 am. Oneonta free demonstrations will be held Wednesday, December 12th at 4:30 pm in the Foothills Performing Arts Center, and Thursday, December 13th at 10:15 a.m., at the Robynwood Assisted Living Center on the Corner of Walnut and Maple. The Robynwood class is an intergenerational class, exposing the residents to the joyful musical interaction of the mixed age class.
For new families wishing to enter the program, free demonstrations will also be available during the first two weeks of January. Pre-registration for these free classes is preferred to ensure space. The Winter session classes start Thursday, January 3rd and continue through the end of March, with the Spring session starting immediately afterwards.
Discounts are available for siblings and returning families. An infant sibling less than 9 months accompanying an older sibling is free. Registration includes two CDs for home and the car, parent education materials, and an activity songbook. There are nine total collections of music, each with over thirty new songs to learn. Children birth to age seven can attend the Music Together program for three years without repeating the same Fall, Winter, or Spring collection of music.
Music Together’s primary belief is that all children are born musical and can develop basic music competency in early childhood via a developmentally appropriate full immersion setting that encourages hands-on music experience rather than learning of information about music. In a Music Together class, twelve children and their parents or caregivers (nanny, babysitter, grandparent) meet for 45 minutes each week for ten weeks to experience new songs, chants, movement activities, and instrumental jam sessions. Both adults and children sit in the circle and participate, led by a teacher with early childhood and music skills. The teacher helps adults understand how to participate and the importance of relaxing and enjoying the activities with their children.
Children have many opportunities to create and to play—making up rhythm patterns, making up new words to songs, and making up movements to express a sound. Some children simply stare and “study” the activity as they absorb the musically rich environment. Others sing, play, and dance freely because they know the songs and chants from the songbook and recording they take home. All experience a comfortable, encouraging environment that respects individual temperaments and learning styles. Twelve to fourteen activities are included in each class ranging from free movement to songs in unusual tonalities and unusual meters.
Besides the musical benefits, a recent national study conducted at Head Start in Bridgeport, Connecticut has shown that children who participate in Music Together® over the three years of rotating curriculum show significant gains compared to peers who have not received the program in the areas of cognitive, social/emotional, physical, and language development.
For more information, to reserve a spot in a demonstration class, or to register for Music Together® classes, contact director Pamela West-Finkle at 607-652-2330 or email FunMusic4Kids@aol.com. More information about programs and classes and registration forms are available on www.communitymusicnetwork.com. For more information on Music Together®, visit the national website at www.musictogether.com.