Class Description

What can you expect from shir a song classes?

We strive to create a relaxed and fun atmosphere exploring different rhythms and melodies through both Jewish and secular music.  We do fingerplays, dances, play instruments, and more.  Because the classes are of mixed-ages, children participate at their own level and in their own developmentally appropriate way, thus creating a varied and rich community of music makers:  the little ones imitate the older ones and the bigger kids get to be the leaders and show the “babies” how to do things … just like a family!

Our philosophy on music education is based on the research and developmentally appropriate practices of Music Together LLC, an internationally renowned early childhood music organization with whom Ms. Ellie trained in 2006.

*click on the image below for a photo slideshow presenting some of our classes.

We believe that:

* all children are musical

* all children can learn to sing in tune and to keep a beat, regardless of parental ability (or lack thereof!)

* children must experience music — feel it, hear it, see it — in a fun and exciting way, in order to make music

* children enjoy making music with the folks they love in a relaxed, non-performance driven, playful setting!

You will be amazed at how much the children can learn by watching those they love actively engaged in making music around them.  So, do we expect them to sit in the circle and follow along?  Absolutely not!  They are free to participate in whatever way they choose (or not to choose)!  One of the primary influences of your child’s musical behaviors is YOU!  Therefore, it is your participation and excitement around the songs and activities that will influence their overall disposition for music making not just during the class, but at home as well.

Parents and caregivers’ participation is vital– by providing strong models for the children regardless of what you think your own ability is!  Your child will learn a positive disposition toward music making from YOU, and only you.  S/he will learn the music making skills (i.e., singing in tune and keeping a steady beat) in due time and from the gazillion other music media around him/her.  But acquiring a love of music is a gift that you provide your little one.  Just like reading – you want them to enjoy reading, and from an early age you read to them, provide them board books to explore, make reading part of your daily life.  The same can be true for music and instilling a love of music.  The skill of instrumentation is one thing, but a love of music is something else.

One of our goals is that you will leave class with an increased awareness of and comfort on how to joyfully incorporate playful music making at home.  You will also leave class with a repertoire of songs – both Jewish and secular – that you and your child will continue to sing together, long after class is over!

Providing an enriched musical classroom at a young age is one of the first steps toward independent music making.