Come Together: Making music with your baby can instill a lifelong love of learning
“Good morning, you look lovely today,” says Ms. Jennifer, as the children trickle in. There are smiles, there are laughs, there’s an obvious air of excitement in the room as families join together in a circle in the middle. Shoes are off and the students are anticipating the start of music time.
I, too, eagerly await the first day of music class with my 5-month-old. I’ve always known that music plays a special role in life. There’s something about the joy of sitting together engulfed in song that has always seemed magical to me, transformational really. Music is a gift and I couldn’t wait to show my son the fun that could be had from embracing the music at an early age. So there we sat, surrounded by children of different ages, all excited to be there, all engaged.
Ms. Jennifer sits down at the piano and it begins…
Hello to Braxton, so glad to see you.
Hello to Mommy, so glad to see you.
Hello to Daddy, so glad to see you.
Hello everybody, we’re so glad to see you.*
Music Together is an internationally recognized childhood music and movement program for children from birth through 7 years. Since 1987, the program’s mission has been to offer children the opportunity to explore music in a loving and education-rich environment. The best part is that the whole family is required to participate, meaning everyone gets a chance to have fun and children get the opportunity to mimic their most important role models. The award-winning program focuses on the idea that all children, if introduced to music early enough, can find their voice, sing in tune and keep a beat. And research backs the idea—studies show that early music education can have a direct impact on a child’s ability to learn, whether cognitively, emotionally, socially or physically.
Ladybug, she creeps along and as she creeps she sings her song, do do doooo do do do dooooo, do do do dooooo.
The Music Together curriculum is adapted to fit the needs of different families, from babies-only courses to mixed-age family classes, to music-focused preschool choices, special needs courses and independent “Big Kids” classes, there’s something for everyone. Students will learn to share songs with their families and teachers, explore different instruments, follow along in rhythm chants, and use their body in movement activities. There’s also a diverse range of songs to be learned, since a new collection is offered every semester over the course of three years. From jazz to folk, children will hear an array of styles all adding to the development of different sounds.
Music Together classes also bring a chance for your child to embrace other cultures at a young age. Instruments such as drums, tambourines and scarfs are introduced into the mix for children to have the ability to create the unique sounds featured in their favorite songs.
Obwisana sa nana, Obwisana sa, Obwisana sa nana, Obwisana sa.*
As the class neared to a close, and instruments were put back in their correct homes and Ms. Jennifer readied her students for a final tune, I looked around at the diverse group of little musicians who had poured their tiny hearts into the last half hour and I smilewith delight at the idea that my son will grow up participating in a group where parents and children, siblings and friends can come, all differences aside, to rejoice in a celebration of our most basic need to harmonize with music—together.
To enroll your family in Music Together, visit their website for a searchable map of classes near you and to find all the information you’ll need to get started. Or visit the expertblog to find out more reasons why early music education can have a beneficial and long-lasting effect on your child’s ability to learn.
*All lyrics featured above can be found on one of the award-winning Music Together Family Favorites CDs.
A special thanks to Jennifer Farg