Innovative Program Teaches Young Children to Write Music
Monday, May 21, 2012
“It’s helping her in every area of her life,” Felicetti said. “She was previously very shy, but the little solos they do are giving her confidence. It’s also helping me to prepare her for Kindergarten. I’m understanding how she learns, and what frustrates her.
“There have been a lot of mini-successes along the way,” Felicetti said.
Music for Young Learners
Amelia and her mother are enrolled in the Children’s Music Academy, a proprietary music program designed for children aged 4 to 8.
“We bridge the gap between the Mommy and me classes, until they are ready for private lessons,” Deanna Wong, owner of the Worcester and Westborough studios, said.
Wong said the program is aimed at that age group because their young ears are most receptive to musical training.
Students enrolled in the program come once a week to sing, clap, play instruments, learn rhythm and music theory, and as they progress, write their own music. Unlike many children’s activities, this is not a drop-off activity, but one where parents are active participants in their children’s learning.
“Everything is a game,” Wong said. “This week is Olympic week, and we are giving out points and at the end of class, the students will get a medal.”
While Shaqui was an active participant during class, singing, playing the games, voicing his preferences for his individual solo and for the class’ group song, Lavarin said she learned a lot of music during the year.
“I can play now – before I knew some of the notes, but now I can read them, and I’m much faster than I was,” Lavarin said.
“At the end of the program, the parents learn the curriculum just like their children,” Wong said.
Felicetti said the class is exceeding her expectations. “I love the way they teach music – they are learning the foundations of music, and I am confident that whatever instrument Amelia picks up, she’ll be ahead of the rest of the class.”
About Children’s Music Academy
Originally established in 1974 in California, Children’s Music Academy uses a proprietary curriculum that teaches the foundations of music through play and games. Students and their adult partner are expected to complete “Homefun” each week, which usually consists of practicing their song a few times and completing a section in their workbook.
Younger beginners (aged 4 and 5) participate in the program for 3 ½ years; first and second graders participate for 2 ½ years.
“And when they graduate, they can read music and write music. They can play the piano, guitar and recorder, and they know how to practice,” Wong said. “And because they know how to practice, they know the benefits of persevering through something.”
Wong, who played violin and string bass as a child, first discovered the program while living in Colorado. After participating in the program with her own children, Wong participated in the teacher training and opened the Worcester studio in 2006. She opened the Westborough studio in 2009.
The Worcester location recently relocated to 360 West Boylston St (Route 12) Suite #201, West Boylston, and held an Open House on Sunday May 20. The public is invited to participate in an introductory class on June 10. Call 508-898-3888 to reserve a spot.
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