Classes are 45 minutes and the semester is 10 weeks. Families take home CDs of the music and a beautifully illustrated songbook allowing them to make Music Together at home.
At Music Together, we believe that all children are musical. Just as a child has the innate ability to speak and understand his native language, he also has the ability to do the same with the language of music. We don't wait to talk to our children until they show a "talent" for language. Children talk when they are ready because they have been immersed in language from birth. Children walk when they are ready because they have felt movement while being carried and have watched people around them walk. Giving a child this same kind of immersion in musical experiences will provide him or her with opportunities to learn to sing in tune and keep a steady beat.
Not only can you, we encourage it! Research shows that preschoolers learn best in a mixed age environment. The little ones learn by watching and imitating the older children. The older children love being the “big kids” and showing the little ones how it is done. This family-style learning environment facilitates participation and involvement in the music for every child, at whatever developmental stage they may be. Just as children learn to walk and talk in different ways, children learn to sing in tune and to the correct beat in a style that is unique to them.
There are many different learning styles. Some children are visual learners who need to watch before they experiment on their own. Others are aural learners who are listening, even when they are across the room. Kinesthetic learners need to move! Tell a kinesthetic learner that she can’t move and you are actually hurting her learning process. Therefore, 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. Instead of waiting for your child to do something in class, let yourself go and do it yourself. Then, watch and listen to her at home, and you will see and hear how much she is learning and absorbing in class!
Music Together is designed for children ages birth through kindergarten. At Music Together we believe that music ability is as much a basic life skill as walking and talking, and that all children can learn to sing in tune, keep a beat, and participate with pleasure and confidence in the music of their culture. Music Together classes nurture the child’s natural enthusiasm for music and movement as we sing, dance, chant, and play instruments in an informal setting that will enrich her musical environment and guide her towards a lifetime of music-making enjoyment.
In the 1980s, Music Together pioneered the development of the mixed-age approach in early childhood music. In each class we strive to create a musically rich, developmentally appropriate environment where the whole family can enjoy music and nurture skills at the level right for each child. Mixed-age classes also provide a rich learning environment because children of different ages thrive when they interact with each other: the babies are often fascinated by the older child, and the “big” children enjoy helping and sharing with the “little” ones. This approach is based on research from music education, early childhood development, and family relationships, as well as our 20 years experience in the field.
Each class has 6- 12 registered children plus their primary caregiver(s).
Throughout the semester, Music Together classes may be in session when older children have a school holiday. Older siblings of registered students may occassionally visit provided the older sibling is HEALTHY and that the visit is prearranged with the school office. Visitation spots are available on a first come, first serve basis.
Families are allowed two makeups per semester. Makeups are available at any location. You can schedule a make-up online by logging onto your account and clicking "my classes". (Please note: makeups do not carry over from previous semesters). If you know you’ll miss a class during the semester, please let us know and we will inform the teacher.
Changes can be made depending on class availability.
Families wishing to withdrawal from class must do so before the registration deadline for each semester (typically the first day of classes). Families are responsible for class attendance. Non-attendance does not constitute a withdrawal and all tuition fees are forfeited if the school office is not informed of your withdrawal before the registration deadline. If circumstances necessitate withdrawal from class, please call the school office.
Late registration will be handled on a case by case basis.
Please feel comfortable to nurse your child in class, but we ask that you not bring food or drink into classrooms.
Both or either parent, grandparents or caregivers are welcome to attend class at any time – no need to ask. Whole family music making in your home is extremely valuable to your child's musical development, and attending class occasionally helps the other family members to join in at home.
Enhance your child's experience in class by remembering to sing, sing, sing. Your active participation is the key to your children learning and growing musically. Support the creation of a music only environment while in class by not talking to your children or other adults during the 45 minutes. Since it is difficult for a young child to mask out adult conversation please wait to socialize till after class, and instead contribute to the creation of a musical environment for the children to absorb.
Try not to give verbal directions. It can be tough to restrain the impulse to give your child directives such as "Do what she is doing, hold your instrument this way” but children respond best by just seeing and hearing you doing (and enjoying) it yourself! Wandering toddlers is fine, but If you want your child to come back to you, avoid calling to him from across the room. If necessary, redirect your child physically back to you or the circle. Of course watch out for your child’s safety, but mostly your job is to just relax, and have fun!
Play your CD at home and in the car as frequently as possible, especially during the first few weeks of class. Make it available to your child to listen to while she is playing or before nap or bedtime. Use the songbook to help you remember the songs or to play along if you play an instrument. Try using the songbook at storytime instead of a regular book, and sing through the songs as you go along. Looking at the printed notes on the page will help children understand that music is something that can be read, like words. Familiarization with notation will help them when they are more ready for formal music instruction, typically when they are school aged.
New Music Together parents receive our introductory DVD “Music Together at Home: Helping Your Child Grow Musically”. During class your teacher will refer to topics and point out examples of things covered in the video. We are also happy to discuss your child's individual progress in obtaining musical competence at any time outside of class. If you are a returning student and it has been months or years since you have read the Parent Guide or seen the new DVD, reread it or ask for a copy of the DVD today! You may be surprised how valuable it is, especially after having personal experience observing your child's music development.
Instruments are available for purchase for use at home or as gifts directly from http://musictogether.com/Store.
Occasionally classes at Music Together are professionally photographed and/or videotaped. These photographs/videos are sometimes used for publicity purposes. Parents will, in instances where these images are intended for publicity purposes, be asked to sign the appropriate release forms. As our classes are participatory and educational experiences between adults and children, we ask our families to please refrain from taking photo or video during class time, however we welcome pictures before or after class.
Gift certificates for any amount towards Music Together classes can be purchased at any time. It makes a nice baby shower or birthday gift. Grandparents love to buy these for holiday gifts. Let us know if you would like it sent directly to the recipient or to the purchaser.