Summer Camps and Classes at Kindermusik of Clayton & Voice of Clayton

May 31, 2008 at 10:40 pm | Posted in Babies, Children's Music, Kindermusik, Music, Music Making, Music Together, Musical Instruments, Parenting, Sign & Sing, Singing, Voice Students | Leave a comment
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SummerFlyer2008

 

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Musical Princess Day!

May 31, 2008 at 10:11 pm | Posted in Children's Music, Dancing, FUN, Kindermusik, Music, Musical Fairy Tale Tea Party, Princess Day, Princesses!, Tea Party! | Leave a comment
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Musical Princess Day 2008

Another group of little princesses enjoyed our Musical Princess Day on May 17th. We had such a great time another one is in the planning stages. Keep watching for a chance to let your little princess participate!

Making your home a more musical place for your children…

May 3, 2008 at 9:45 pm | Posted in Children's Music, Kindermusik, Music, Music Making, Musical Instruments, Parenting, Singing | 2 Comments
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Kindermusik educator Amy B. in Plymouth MI recently was giving some advice to a fellow new educator on helping families to make their homes more musical. Thank you Amy for sharing!

Making Your Home More Musical

Here are a few ideas for home–a lot depends on the age of the child, so some will apply better to different ages. Basically, just as elementary school teachers suggest “littering your house with books” to encourage young children’s reading and enjoyment of reading, I would say, “litter your house with music”! That is, put it all around your whole family, so it becomes an important part of your everyday life.

–Use your home materials; use your family activity book for ideas to do at home; do the “homework” projects in Kindermusik Imagine That! (ages 3.5-5 years) and the at-home activities in Kindermusik of the Young Child (ages 5-7 years); practice with your child so s/he can feel successful in class

–Sing, dance, and play music at home–often–Kindermusik CDs, other good children’s music, your own favorite “family appropriate” singers and musicians. Make it a fun part of your family’s day.

–Listen to a wide variety of music–classical, folk, country, jazz, a bit of rock and pop (o.k. can you see my bias showing), music from other countries. Borrow some CDs from the library with out-of-the-
ordinary music to find out what you and your family like.

–Keep a “music basket” with your egg shakers, zig zag blocks, fiddlesticks, resonator bars, slide whistles, drums, tambourines, etc., etc., etc. in it. Put it in the same room with a CD player so it’s easy to put on some music and march, dance, and play–often. Try to avoid the temptation to ask your children to “not make so much noise” 🙂 Of course, some instruments, like slide whistles and loud drums, make great basement and outdoor “parade” instruments!

–When you get to Kindermusik Imagine That and KIndermusik for the Young Child, keep your child’s current instrument and bag very handy for them to get out. Yes, sometimes that means you’ll get to class without your slide whistle, drum, book, folder, or glockenspiel–but so much better to actually use them during the week- -and your child can share with a friend or use a spare from her teacher in class.

–If you–Mom or Dad–play an instrument, play it for and with your child. Doesn’t matter if you played it in junior high years ago and it’s been in the attic since then. Children enjoy hearing it because A–it’s a real instrument, not just the sound of one on CD, and B–it’s Mom or Dad playing it. Ask other family members to share whatever they may play–maybe Grandpa plays a bit of piano, Grandma plays the accordian, or Uncle Joe plays the balilaika (or whatever 🙂 ). It’s a great way to share your family’s culture and history as
well as music, and often others will not think anyone would want to hear them unless they’re asked.

–If you have older children, or older cousins, have a family music night where everybody plays something–whatever instrument they’re learning to play, or sing a song. Have everybody join in for a sing-a-long and/or “family jam” with all those instruments from the music basket.

–If you have relatives and friends with older children, go to some middle school and high school concerts. They’re cheap, usually free, and children can see others who are still learning to play and sing. High school musicians are often very accomplished already. Find out what your local high school is performing for a spring play or musical. Look for local productions of ballet, like The Nutcracker at Christmastime.

–Look for family concerts and events in your area. I know this is harder in smaller communities, but maybe sometimes make it a special event on a trip to a larger city. Orchestras, bands, choirs, parades, theater, ballet, puppet shows, children’s performers, summer concerts in the park…the list is almost endless.

–If you’re not ready to invest in a piano, look for an electronic keyboard–one that is more than a kids’ toy without being a huge investment. Put in in a place where your child can easily play it (not “play with it”) and explore it–simply expect them to treat it kindly and gently (playing with fingers, not fists or feet). You could even consider looking for a used child-size violin or guitar–not to start lessons on it, just to explore and play.

–Try to avoid the temptation to rush into formal lessons–again a great reason for Kindermusik for the Young Child since it is process, not performance based and is age- and developmentally appropriate!

The Smithfield Ham and Yam Festival is this weekend! …

May 1, 2008 at 10:54 pm | Posted in Blogroll, Charities, Family, Family Support, FUN, Music, Parenting, Ramblings, Relay for Life, Traditions | Leave a comment
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Ham and Yam logo

It is festival time in Johnston County! Last week was the Strawberry Festival in the Cleveland community, this weekend is the Ham and Yam Festival in Smithfield, two weeks down the road will be the Acorn Festival in Four Oaks, Johnston County Relay for Life is May 30th and the first weekend in June is Millstock Music and Art Fair in Clayton. All of these are family friendly events with lots of FREE things to do, FREE music to listen to, homemade goodies to eat and lots of causes to support. I particularly like to support the Johnston County Relay for Life event as it reaches so many local people who are cancer survivors and families still healing from losing someone close, to cancer.  These family events are reminiscent of times gone by. Sitting in lawn chairs or a blanket on a grassy slope listening to local talent, or looking at the creativity of children who have decorated yams for the “What is that Yam Thing?” contest, or seeing the teamwork of a group of people out to support their friends and family in raising money to help a special cause… take some time folks to smell the flowers, talk a walk through the arts and crafts booths, and enjoy some ham biscuits, rib sandwiches, yam fries, or something else homemade and delicious. Get away from the high gas prices, rush of the work week and stress of making ends meet and enjoy each other! That’s what I will be doing… 🙂 Julie

 

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