Mixed-age (birth-5 yrs)
In a Music Together® class, families spend 45 minutes each week shaking eggs, clicking sticks, banging drums, bouncing on laps, spinning, marching, and so much more—and while we have a great time, the children miraculously teach themselves through play. (No kidding: It really works!) Check out this PDF that explains what you'll see in class...
What's great about MT is that the adults make music the grownup way while the children play the kids' way—and everyone has a ton of fun. High-energy movers and quiet observers are all equally involved in the exciting musical activities around them: We create a comfortable, encouraging environment that respects all individual temperaments and learning styles.
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A program with deep roots and high praise: Music Together was created just down the road (at the Montclair Cooperative School) over 30 years ago. We've come a long way since then! Now, our curriculum, recordings, and publications have won awards and are recognized as the "gold standard" of early childhood music education in more than 45 countries around the world.
The types of classes we offer are:
This is the essential Music Together class, in which children acquire a strong tonal, rhythm, and movement "vocabulary" and build a repertiore of over 200 songs (from our nine different song colllections). Our "mixed-age" approach fosters natural, family-style learning where younger children enjoy watching and imitating older ones; older children learn by leading younger ones; and adults are happy because the children in the family can go to class together. (To read some of the research behind the value of mixed-age groupings in early childhood, here's a reference link.) Each child participates at his or her own developmental level in singing, moving, chanting, listening, observing, and exploring musical instruments. We welcome the whole family to join in this important family music experience, and any caregivers—parents, grandparents, babysitter—can bring the children to class.
Babies (birth-8 mos)
Parents with infants can certainly join a mixed-age class, but you may opt for the special "Babies-Only Class" offered as a one-semester introduction to Music Together (after which babies attend mixed-age classes). The music activities and materials are specially designed for parents who want to learn as much as possible about music development in babies, meet other parents of newborns, find out how to use music to stimulate and bond with your baby, and learn some fascinating music activities you can recreate at home with your baby. More info: westessexmusictogether.com/babies.html
Rhythm Kids (5-8 yrs)
Rhythm Kids, specifically designed for children ages 5-8 years, takes big kids music to the next level, preparing them for formal instruction OR for being fluent music-makers throughout life. Whether you started Music Together in a mixed-age environment, or if you are just discovering us now, your child will have the opportunity for rich musical development and growth while having the BEST time learning! Composing, choreography, conduction, improvisation, ear-training, dance, drumming, singing—we'll do it all! (Parents are welcome to stay for this class, but it is designed as a drop-off experience.) More info: westessexmusictogether.com/rhythm-kids.html
Guitar for Grownups
Do you have a guitar at home that you haven’t picked up in a while? Or have you always wanted to learn to play? When you learn how to play your family’s favorite Music Together songs, you’ll be a star in the eyes of your child—and provide a wonderful music-making model for him or her, too!
In the Music Together Guitar Class for Grownups, you’ll learn how to play songs in the current Music Together song collection. Even if you’ve never picked up a guitar before, you’ll leave the first class able to play one song and ready to lead your family in musical jam sessions. A new way to bond musically with your son or daughter is the perfect reason to pick up that dusty instrument or to begin to learn a new one.
About the Guitar Class:
- Classes are open to parents and caregivers currently enrolled in Music Together classes.
- The Guitar Class is appropriate for beginners and those who already know a little guitar.
- Small classes allow for relaxed, individualized learning.
- During class, students learn basic strums and chords for more than a dozen songs from the current Music Together song collection.
- Participants receive a Guitar Workbook each semester to complement the song collection’s family songbook and recording.
- Students should bring a guitar and capo to the first class (and an electronic guitar tuner if they have one).
During class, you’ll meet and connect with other parents, grandparents, and preschool teachers as you learn Music Together songs together in a warm, supportive environment. If you take the class for several semesters, you can develop fluency, learn full chords, and use advanced strums. Most importantly, you’ll have fun while developing a new skill!
Supportive Family Classes
Families with children with special needs often find that general Music Together family classes fill their need for a welcoming, community-based experience the whole family can enjoy. However, some families may find a smaller, more intimate class to be a better fit. With that in mind, our Supportive Family Classes are led by a board-certified Music Therapist and provide a rich Music Together experience specifically tailored to meet the needs of ALL children in a gentler, smaller environment. These classes are smaller, quieter, and more purposeful but just as fun, payful, and developmentally-rich.