Musikgarten Musikgarten
Welcome to Gate City Musikgarten!

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Musikgarten?

Musikgarten is an international early childhood music and movement program which nurtures musical aptitude of infants through elementary age children in a sequential curriculum.  The curriculum is a nine-year plan to build comprehensive musicianship skills.  These skills include singing, rhythmic and melodic patterning, fine and gross motor movement, beat competence, focused listening, playing instruments, ensemble development, and note-reading, each skill being introduced when developmentally appropriate. 


What do you mean when you say that Musikgarten has a 9-year developmental plan for my child?
Musikgarten has a program that addresses the unique developmental needs of children at each age, from birth through age nine. 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. 


Why should I pursue early childhood music education for my child?
Music is a joyful and natural way to interact and bond with your baby and child.  Furthermore, music awakens and stimulates neural pathways in the brain that are associated with higher-level processes, such as abstract thinking, memory, empathy, mathematics and science. Music immerses the child in language, evokes movement, stimulates the brain and fosters physical coordination - all in a group setting that builds community for a holistic experience. 


Why Musikgarten and not a different early childhood music and movement program? 

Musikgarten's emphasis on listening and purposeful movement in the context of a sequential music program is unique.  Research documents that children today are over-stimulated visually and need purposeful movement and music training more than ever.  The Musikgarten curriculum fosters imaginative behaviors and emphasizes active, thoughtful participation, not entertainment for its own sake.  Musikgarten is unique in these respects and will give your child something that many activities and products on the market today will not.  In class, we sing, dance, bounce, rock, and generally have a good time.  But there is a purpose in everything that we do.  There are always multiple reasons for each of the activities that make up the class, sometimes musical, sometimes developmental, and often times both.  The educators who wrote the curriculum have extensive expertise in how children learn (in general) and how children learn music (specifically).


Why Choose Musikgarten classes for your family?

Each Musikgarten class meets the developmental needs of your child.  The baby class focuses on parent/infant bonding.  The toddler class allows freedom for motor exploration.  The preschool-aged class provides opportunity for children to try out their developing language.  The older classes focus on social skills (ensemble) and their budding creativity (composition).


What are the different classes currently offered by Gate City Musikgarten?
Family Music for Babies, Family Music for Toddlers, Cycle of Seasons for ages 3-5.  Music Makers at Home and Around the World for ages 4-7 and, Music Makers at the Keyboard, the group piano program for ages 6-9.

What are the other levels of Musikgarten that are not currently offered by Gate City Musikgarten?  
If you are interested in a certain program, please be sure to call and indicate your interest so that you can be notified when the classes are offered.

What if I have more than one child?  Can I bring an older or younger child to a class that is intended for a specific age? 
This is quite possible and parents will be advised on their individual situations.  Please speak with Miss Melissa.  Musikgarten also offers a mixed age class, which will be offered if there is enough demand.

Should parents attend and participate in the classes?
Parents are an integral part of class. As students get older they participate by themselves, but even then, 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.


Tell me about the music and instruments used in class and at home. 

The Musikgarten repertoire is rich with songs and games and the inclusion of classical and folk literature.  All of the recordings are made with real instruments rather than synthesizers.  The booklets that accompany each CD contain the music written out as well as the words to the songs and some suggested activities for parents.  The instruments are high-quality and made of wood or other natural materials. 


Why are family materials included/required in the cost of Gate City Musikgarten classes? 
The family materials allow the entire family to enjoy the music and we hope will inspire music-making at home!  Children and parents can have so much fun at home and in the car with Musikgarten songs and dances.  All Musikgarten family materials center around a CD which includes songs, stories, poems and listening games.  Having these materials at home enables the child to absorb the songs that make up the core repertoire of the music program and build familiarity with the music.  For the very young child, the more familiar something is, the more s/he enjoys it, and he more readily s/he will participate.  For the older child, familiarity with the material allows him or her to engage in complex activities such as dancing, building an instrumental ensemble, or playing a game that combines multiple elements such as singing, movement, and working with a partner. 


Does Musikgarten better prepare students for piano lessons?
Yes, in most cases. Musikgarten classes develop students' aural skills 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.