Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I pursue early childhood music education for my child?
Music awakens and stimulates neural pathways in the brain that are associated with higher forms of intelligence, such as abstract thinking, empathy, mathematics and science. Music's melodic and rhythmic patterns provide exercise for the brain and help develop memory. Remember singing the ABC song to learn your ABC's? Studying music helps children establish good listening habits, which are essential for achievement in school. Overall, music activities are perfect for child development. Music immerses the child in language, evokes movement, stimulates the brain and fosters physical coordination - all in a group setting that builds community - a holistic experience.
How long do the classes last each week?
Classes for babies and toddlers are 30 - 40 minutes per week. Cycle of Seasons classes and Music for 4s and 5s are 45 minutes per week. Music Makers: at home in the World classes are 1 hour per week. Music Makers: Around the World at the Keyboard and all keyboard classes are 60 - 75 minutes per week.
What does is mean when you say Musikgarten has a 9 year developmental plan for my child?
Only Musikgarten has a program that addresses the unique developmental needs of children at each age. Each of the classes are interrelated, as they were written for children to grow-up with Musikgarten. This sequential planning also makes it easier for the students to grow in their musical competence and graduate to instrument playing.
Should Parents attend and participate in the classes?
Parents are an integral part of class in the younger years. As students get older they participate by themselves, but parents take part in the classes towards the end of each lesson. For all classes, parents are asked to include active music making in their child’s life. Sing along with the CD. Play echo games, making up patterns, as we do in class. Put the picture cards or notation games on your refrigerator and play identification games with them as you get ready for dinner. More structured practice is required when the children get to Music Makers: At the Keyboard.
Does Musikgarten today better prepare students for piano lessons?
Yes, in most cases. Musikgarten classes develop students aural senses more than other pre-piano methods. The Music Makers: At the Keyboard classes are taught in a group session, so that children learn from each other and grow in their comfort of playing with and in front of one another.
Why do the students get Home Materials? Are we supposed to practice at home?
Children and parents can have so much fun at home and in the car with Musikgarten songs and dances. In class you learn the songs, but at home is where you really have fun with the songs and dances. It's a great family bonding time. Try it and you won't have to ask this question ever again!
What if I can't make it one week due to a vacation or other conflict?
Please let us know as soon as you know. There is generally no make ups for classes missed due to family vacation or conflicts, however, we can work on a plan to accommodate your needs while keeping your child's progress with music on track.
Do you have a class that would allow me to bring several of my children of different ages to at the same time?
Musikgarten has created a class called "All Together Now," which allows pre-schoolers and toddlers to be in one class at the same time. The program is based on adapting nursery rhymes to a music and movement format. As you might imagine, there is lots of movement to keep the toddlers busy.
As my child gets older there seem to be more and more activities for him/her to do? Why should I continue with music and movement training?
After being in the program for a while, you can see the benefits your child is getting from class. It is our view that the singing, dancing and playing (in class and at home) is the best for your child's wholistic development: language, movement, math skills, and physical coordination - all in a group setting that builds community. While other activities can be fun too, the primary building block of your child's developmental time should be spent with Musikgarten.
When is it a good time to start singing lessons?
It is best to begin voice lessons once the student's voice is more grounded and they have begun to go through puberty. Puberty can occur at different ages, but typically round age 11 or 12 most children's voices are in the process of undergoing drastic changes, influenced by hormones. Younger children might love to sing, but a lesson that focuses solely on vocal technique can be extremely difficult on young, undeveloped vocal chords. Therefore, we recommend starting young children in the Musikgarten curriculum. By moving to music, learning to sing in tune, studying notes, working on musicianship skills and developing a steady beat, they will be grealy aided in the future when its the best time to start voice lessons.