Why should I pursue Musikgarten classes for my child? We know that all children are musical, but that potential will decrease if it isn’t nurtured when they are young. We also know that 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.
What is Musikgarten's developmental plan for my child, and why is it important? Only Musikgarten has a program that addresses the unique developmental needs of children at each age, taking children from infancy up through group piano lessons. Classes are designed for children to “grow up" with Musikgarten. In fact, most children and parents love their Musikgarten classes so much, it is not uncommon for a family to continue with Musikgarten until the child reaches age 9 or 10, at which point he/she will be ready for private piano lessons and/or an instrument for band or orchestra.
Should parents attend and participate in the classes? Absolutely! 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 in the car. 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.
Why do 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 home is where you really have fun with the songs and dances. It's a great family bonding time. It allows children and parents to share in the experience at home.
Do you have a class that would allow me to bring several of my children of different ages at the same time? Musikgarten teachers have the freedom to set their own policies regarding this. Check with the Musikgarten teacher in your area to see about the sibling policy.
As my child gets older, there are so many other activities to try. Why should I continue with Musikgarten? After being in the program for a while, you will 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 holistic 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.