Finally, Marco Island kids will benefit from a program developed at Princeton back in 1985. The “Music Together” sample class held at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on Friday was a huge success, guaranteeing a class for kids ages birth to five, scheduled to begin Jan. 11.
- AUDIO SLIDESHOW: Children learn to make beautiful music
Kelly Gear, parent of two preschoolers who recently attended a class in Naples, says the program was so beneficial for her children, she wanted other parents in Marco Island to experience the goodness without having to make the trip to Immokalee.
“We went to a 10 week session in Naples. Once a week for 45 minutes we learned songs and chants. They played instruments. There was dancing. And about two weeks in, I started working on getting it to the island,” explained Gear. “The other teacher told me there was another teacher in the area. She put me in touch with her and through many phone calls back and forth we found a place and a time to make it work.”
She added, “I think there’s a lot of moms and children on Marco and there’s not a lot of things to do. This was a sample class so the moms could see what a real class would be like and if they want to sign up. I thought it was great!”
The “Music Together” sample class gives mothers an opportunity to see how their child would potentially benefit from the program.
During the regular 10 week session, children will learn 35 songs which incorporate large movement, small movement, lullaby themes, play along tunes and rhythm chants. The new session begins Jan. 11 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church music room and runs each Friday for 10 weeks thereafter. The cost is $160 per child and includes a book and two CDs.
Carolyn Beauchamp, the licensed “Music Together” instructor, who was also trained in piano, voice, flute and guitar, says the program does much more than teach children about music.
“Music Together develops spacial, mathematical and cognitive skills. Music is mathematics to song. It is proven that when children look at notes, and take classes where they are learning basic music competence, they learn to read music quicker, their mathematical skills are much sharper and they interact with other children from a young age. All of that is extremely beneficial,” explained Beauchamp.
Twelve children will have the opportunity to benefit from the upcoming class. Ten children have been enrolled to date. Beauchamp says additional classes will be scheduled as necessary.
“The kids had fun! It was a little chaotic because it’s a sample class and the kids don’t know the songs yet but once all the kids start getting to know the songs they join in and participate more,” said Gear. “I like giving my kids the chance to interact with other children and music seems a natural way to do it. Children just love to dance and sing. It’s fun for them.”
For more information or to schedule call 218-5673.