Thanks for stopping by A Family Place. I enjoy working with families, and sharing the power of music with them. Kindermusik provides this outlet for me. This blog will allow me to share thoughts and ideas that can help families in their journey.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Young Child year two or .....

Here's a scenario that happens frequently: My child has participated in Kindermusik for several years, and has completed the first year of the Young Child curriculum. Should I move them to private piano or violin instead of completing the Young Child sequence?

A child completing 1st year of Young Child is usually 5 or maybe 6 years old. Many piano teachers do not take students until they are 7. Violin teachers will take children at a younger age because their are instruments designed for smaller hands (1/4 and 1/2 size violins). What are the advantages of completing the Young Child sequence?
  • Kindermusik is a group activity and children enjoy making music with their peers.
  • Kindermusik includes many games that make it more than just learning a new song. The songs are just fun, they teach skills like ear training and form.
  • Kindermusik introduces the children to composers and styles of music through listening and moving to music. This doesn't happen in most private lessons.
  • The 2nd year of Young Child has the children playing a dulcimer and a recorder. The dulcimer is a string instrument, the recorder is a wind instrument - both require fine motor skills. Violin and piano are fine motor skill driven too.
  • Steady beat is continued to be reinforced in Kindermusik through ensemble playing. All music requires a steady pulse, but the group aspect of Kindermusik helps the children feel it easier than doing it on their own!
  • Ensemble playing is more prevalent in the 2nd year of Young Child, and this encourages listening. Is someone too loud? do we have a steady beat? can you hear the melody?
  • Private lessons cost considerably more than group classes.  For example, Kindermusik for the Young Child is $250 for the entire semester, including materials.  Private lessons can cost $350 and more for the semester, plus books are extra.
I have seen students leave the Kindermusik curriculum, take piano later with "holes" that have to be repaired. Students who continue through year two of Kindermusik have a solid foundation!

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