Try a music or art class at January Demo classes

Of course, you want to try a Kindermusik class with Ms. Debbie, or an art class with Ms. Carolyn, but you are worried about the cost, or whether your child will like it, or whether they will disrupt the class, or whether you will have to dance or sing.  Well, don’t worry so much, you can dance and sing when you want to, just like your child is encouraged to participate in their own way.  Your child may not be ecstatic about it the first day, but will grow to love it in just a few weeks (when they become familiar with the routine), and we can work through the cost issue (I’ve got my ways.)  But first, just come and try it out a class.

Demo Days Logo

THIRD Week of January:    17 – 21st

at InTune Studios

Enroll Online:   FREE DEMO Class Schedule 

Invite a friend: See you then !               Enroll Together and each get FREE music !

 

Demo classes reflect the programs offered by Music Connections and InTune Studios

Spring 2012 Semester

starting First week of February:            Jan. 31 – Feb. 2

leaf play

Babies: infants up to 17 months

– Kindermusik Village: Cock-a-Doodle Moo

– Kindermusik Playdates: Winter Wonderland
– Kindermusik Sign & Sing: Unit 1 (6 – 30 m)

 

Peek a boo Darcy

Toddlers: 1 1/2 – 3 1/2 yrs

– Kindermusik Our Time: Away We Go

– Art & Literacy: Pee Wee Picasso’s (InTune)

 

IT Boats

Preschoolers: 3 – 5 yrs.

– KM Imagine That: Toys I Make, Trips I Take

 

Ole'

Elementary: 5 – 7 yrs.

Kindermusik for the Young Child (5 – 7 yrs)

Art’Sing: Singing, Drama, Art (6 – 13 yrs) (InTune)

 

Family Lap bounce

Families:

Kindermusik Playdates: (one time events)

Jan: Winter Wonderland

Feb: Let Me Call You Sweetheart

Mar: It’s Your Lucky Day

 

These Playdates are offered one Sat. a month, as well as a variety of times of other times.

 

Be a part of a wonderful musical experience with your family this Spring !!!

 

For any Kindermusik classes,  Enroll online   or contact Debbie Mondale.

Email  musiconnx@att.net ,  or call: 863-816-8835

 

For any InTune Studios classes,  contact Tiffany Stokes

intunestudios@gmail.com , or call  863-937-7782

I hope to see you at the studio this week.  Until then, be well.

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Kindermusik in Winter Haven – A survey for you

I am thrilled at the level of interest from families to have Kindermusik programs offered in Winter Haven.  More and more families are recognizing the value of music in the lives of their children and families, and want to have it more accessible. 
 
I am excited to once again work with the wonderful families around Winter Haven, but I want to make sure to plan effectively for those families who are interested.  This survey will help me determine what times and programs are best for families, as well as a few other details.
 
There are several options that I mention in the survey that will be easier for you to review before you take the survey.
 
Kindermusik Playdate – This is a one-time event, up to an hour of fun musical activities, and includes music and 1 prop or instrument so parents can continue the fun and learning at home. These are currently scheduled on the 2nd Sat. of each month in the Lakeland location.  The next event is on October 8.  See the details on my blog:  Party with the Pumpkins 
 
WINTER HAVEN Options: 
  • A Playdate can be scheduled at a location of your choice, at a time that works for you and your group of friends.  (as it fits in my schedule)  (If interested, add it to your comments)
  • A Playdate can be scheduled by me at a central location at a time that many families find convenient.  (That’s why I need your feedback.)
Kindermusik Adventures –  Includes 5 weekly classes, up to an hour of fun musical activities based on a theme, and includes music, props, instruments, and materials so parents can continue the fun and learning at home.  The musical process is greatly enhanced for children when they have the opportunity to get familiar with the music, and have a chance to get accostomed to the routines of regularly structured music classes.  We can set this up so the cost can be divided into 2 monthly payments.  I’d like to offer the following programs in October/November at a central location at a time that many families find convenient.  
 
For Babies (2 – 18 months):  Peek-A-Boo, I LOVE You !
Babies and mommies (or daddies, or grandmas) simply LOVE this semester full of traditional songs and activities that babies and their loving adults play to connect with each other.  These unique songs may come from all over the world, but the result is the same – building strong family bonds and laying a strong foundation for learning in Baby’s brain.
 
For Families (1 – 4 years – flexible):  Creatures in My Back Yard
I’d love to offer this semester of delightfully engaging songs and activities about the birds, bugs, pets, and wild critters that may be found in your yard or nearby park. Children have a natural connection with these creatures, and these songs and activities build and expand on this knowledge base.  But what you see is a happy child exploring the world around them in new and unique musical ways.
 
So PLEASE respond, and complete this survey right away !!!!
so I can use your feedback to schedule programs that work for as many families as possible.  
 
 

In the Spring, we may look at the option of 10 week semesters, so we can consider the Family Time program.  In this case, we can extend the fun and learning, and are able to lower the average cost per class.

THANK you for participating in the survey.  I look forward to hearing from you, and being able to determine the best way to bring Kindermusik to Winter Haven.

Fall Semester Programs and Themes

YC - UkelelesMusic & Learning FALL  naturally together in Kindermusik, especially with Ms. Debbie !

Lakeland Fall Semester

starts first week of September 2011

Host:  InTune Studios in Dixieland Village at 1037 S. Florida Ave. Suite 125 

Most programs are held once a week, Monday through Thursday

Monday eve. and Tues morning classes are taught by Ms. Tiffany

All the rest are taught by Ms. Debbie.

 The following Core Curriculum classes are 45 min. for 15 weeks (except for Young Child which is 60 min.).   For an overview of how the Core Curriculum meets the needs of children at each stage from infancy up to 7 years old, please click here.

Click on the class logo for links to videos and program descriptions.  Or get class details, and enroll right away, at my website,

http://musiconnx.yourvirtuoso.com  

No classes are scheduled during school holidays, so the last 2 classes are first 2 weeks of Jan. 

Village Logo————– Babies ————

                         Infants up to 19 months   

                       Wed. 9:30     Thurs. 12:30

Do-Si-Do  (Feel the beat with the Waltz, the Tango, the Cha Cha, and more…)  (8 weeks) 

Feathers  (Celebrate the migrating birds and the Fall changes through song and dance.)      (2nd semester starts 11/4)    

Our Time

————- Toddlers ————-

                 (1 ½ – 3 ½  yrs)     

Tues.  10 30 am.  with Ms. Tiffany

Wed. 10:30  &  11:30 am.   

                                                             Thurs. 9:30  &  10:30  am.  

  Wiggles & Giggles Semester Themes: Bath time fun and water themes, self discovery & love between family and friends)            

IT Logo———— Preschoolers ———-

                           (3 – 5 yrs) 

         Wed. 1:30     Thurs. 11:30

  See What I Saw  Theme: Park play in every way:  playground, nature discovery, picnics & more !

Kindermusik for the Young Child—— Kindergarten / First Grade ——

                          (5 – 7 yrs)

             Tues. 5:15 pm  – Sem. 1

  In this 2 year music education program, students gain a strong foundation for basic music theory, instilling a passion for learning music and preparing them for success in formal music studies.  Knowledge and skill development includes read/writing rhythms and notation, ensemble development, playing 3 instruments (the glockenspiel, dulcimer, and recorder), learning the instruments of the orchestra and introduction to several composers, learning about cultural music from around the world, and so much more.  Please contact Debbie for more detailed information.

————-  Second Saturdays ———–

9:30 am.   Babies:  1 – 24 months.

10:30 am.  Families:  1 – 5 yrs (this is flexible)

Fabulous one-time events based on seasonal and child friendly themes.  Scheduled for the 2nd Sat. of every month, starting in Sept.

Sept. 10 –   Babies:  Mister Sun (sunshiny goodness)   Families:  Tub Tunes

Oct. 8 –       Annual Pumpkin Party

Nov. 12 –   Winter Wonderland

Dec. 10  –   Bake, Build, and Sing:  Gingerbread HOUSES !

Family Time Logo———— Families ———-

                    (1 – 5 yrs) 

    If interested, contact Debbie for a survey to determine the most desired time.

  Make Way for Music  Theme:  Learn about and experience music concepts through song and movement.  Listen and learn about instruments of the orchestra. 

We also may be creating some new options for families.  If one of the above  doesn’t work for your family, but you want to see something that does, PLEASE talk to me !   If there is enough interest in a particular program at a particular time, we will do our best to accomodate !

 Enrollment can be completed on my website, http://musiconnx.yourvirtuoso.com , and/or contact Debbie at musiconnx@att.net or 816-8835.  If you have questions, please leave a phone number so we can speak personally.  I’d really like to meet the needs of your family.

Pay in full for the entire semester by the first day of class, and get the chance to choose a prize out of the DRUM !   May include Free CD, Free Download Card, instruments, scarves, Discount Card for Tuition, etc.

To clarify Enrollment Discounts, Payment Plans, and my perspective on providing options for ALL families, see my Blog Page about Payments.

2011 Winter Calendar for Families

2011 Jan / Feb   Important Dates for Families 

  For more details on Kindermusik Events,

Check the Music Connections Website

 

Saturday, Jan. 8  – Saturday Family Events    (1-7 yrs. old)

9:30 – NEW Family Time Semester – Each 2nd Sat. for 5 months 

                      “Here, There, & Everywhere”  

 

10:45 –  Family Event:  1x only for new families                  

                       “Kitchen Commotion”

             

  

Jan. 7 – 16    Annual Buffalo Pow Wow  @ Auburndale Marketworld  

                      Native American music, dancing, art, etc.

                     (Ms. Debbie says “This is a MUST SEE local event !”)

                   

  

———— Free Demo Days at InTune Studios ——– 

Jan. 18 – 19   Art and Literacy  –  Demo Class   “Snow Daze”

                                    with Carolyn Espina     Call: 937-7782

Tues.       9:30 am – Little Van Goghs  (1 – 3 yrs)

 Wed.       2:30 pm – PeeWee Picassos (3 – 5 yrs)

 

Jan. 18    Baby Sign Language – Demo class

                                    with Tiffany Stokes    Call: 937-7782

Tues.      11:00 am.  Kindermusik Sign & Sing   (6 – 36 months)

 

Jan. 19 – 20       Kindermusik Demo Classes

                                    with Debbie Mondale     Call: 816-8835

 Wed .     9:30 am.  Village    (infants to 18 mths)

                  11:30 am   Our Time  (1 1/2 – 3 1/2 yrs)

                   1:30 pm   Imagine That  (3 – 5 yrs)

 

Thurs.   11:30 am  Imagine That (3 – 5 yrs)

                   12:30 pm  Village (infants to 18 mths) 

 

If your child seems ready, try out the next level program,

OR, bring a FRIEND to share free class.

 Register for the Demo class on my website.

 

Jan. 20  –  Group Vocal Class Demo

                                     with Tiffany Stokes    Call: 937-7782

Thurs. 4:30 pm.   Young Voices    (5 – 12 yrs)

 

 

————– Kindermusik Spring Semester ————–

 

  

Feb. 5-6     SPRING Kindermusik Semester Starts

                                   Enroll & pay early to save your place !!!

                                   Some classes already FULL !  See Website.

                                   Or contact Debbie:  musiconnx@att.net  

                      

Feb. 6        ISO “Cookie Concert”    early afternoon     

                                     @ Youkey Theatre – Lakeland Center

                      (Ms. Debbie says “This is a MUST SEE local event !”)

 

If you know of other events you believe should be on this calendar, please let me know.  Thanks !

Exploring bird sounds with children

“What does a bird say?”  A lot more than tweet, or chirp.   Most children only consider one sound, but an observant child with more experience in bird sounds might ask, “What kind of bird?” 

bird singingFun vocal play with different bird sounds can open up the world of birds, and sounds, with your child, and can have so many wonderful developmental benefits.    

These are just a few: 

  •  Active Listening is practiced as they focus just on the sound of the bird – listening well enough to imitate it effectively.  This helps them practice “shutting out” other background noises from their attention. 
  • Trying to imitate the sounds helps them explore how units of sound (phonemes) are put together in unique ways, which leads to better articulation and eventually better reading skills  See an excellent article:  On The Path to Reading
  • Watching real birds, or using pictures of birds, and talking about them in detail during the vocal play helps them to make connections cognitively.  Discussions might include questions that will help them discover the characteristics that are similar to all birds, as well as discussing the characteristics that make them different.  Listening and imitating the different sounds they make is an important part of that process. 
  • Children with these experiences are often more observant when watching birds.  And these focused observing skills can easy generalize to many other areas of life.
With children just starting to make sounds, many parents are already helping their child differentiate between a song bird and a duck, and maybe even an owl.  Three choices are perfect for the early learners, and these can often be found in nature, and in pictures or small toys.   Just be sure to verbally discuss the characteristics that make them all belong to the bird family.  Make sure they make the correct connections with just ONE sound, then PLAY around with these sounds, ie:
 
Song BirdTweet – tweedle-eet , tweet-eet-eet-eet-eet – tweedle-eedle-eet (remember the 50s song “Rocking Robin”), toooo-weet, toodle-oodle-oodle…
Duck
Quaaaaack – Quack like mama duck, a daddy, a baby (peep)
OwlWho-Whoot, Too-hoot, Whoo-whoo-oo-whoooooo, Too whooooo, or even a SHRIEK

Once they have made this cognitive connection, and can easily imitate these birds, it is time to add to their birding vocabulary – new birds, and new sounds.  Depending on their interest, add only 1 – 2 birds at a time until they become comfortable with them.   In the following paragraphs, I introduce some of the ways we explore birds in age specific ways during our Kindermusik classes.   You can glean a lot from these ideas and use them at home.   And to get the full experience, join us for a class! 

 
With our Babies in the Kindermusik Village FEATHERS semester, we have fun making bird sounds while moving the babies in a way that complements that particular bird sound.   Adding movement is another excellent way to help solidify the learning that occurs, at any age.  Here are two examples:
Cuckoo bird

Cuckoo bird

 
 
Cuckoo:   Cu – ckoo  (high to low sounds)  SO, we move up and down along with the pitch
ChickadeeChick-a-dee-dee-dee  (high -med-low-low-low).   In this case, we move side to side in time with the rhythm of the sound.
 
With the Toddlers in the Our Time and Adventures programs, we do a LOT of echo play, as this an excellent method for developing language skills and vocabulary.   There are several birds that are great at echo play, like the parrot or the cockatiel, or even the Mockingbird  that we have around here.   It is fun to let the child act like a parrot or use a parrot puppet to copy words or simple phrases, or original parrot sounds, or sounds that a parrot might hear.
  
Parrot:  Squawk – Pretty Bird – Polly wants a cracker – Hello – meow   (parrots also whistle, but age-wise, children are not ready for that until sometime after they are 4 or 5 years old.) 
 
If you want to watch an amazing bird who has an enormous vocabulary, check out the video I included in the following blog posting:  Amazing Bird encourages Vocal Play.
 
With the Preschoolers in the Kindermusik Imagine That!  SEE WHAT I SAW semester, the students are introduced to pictures and recorded sounds of 4 different birds, and we discuss how they look different, and how they sound different from each other, and imitate the sounds of 4 different song birds.  We further explore birds through songs and movement activities.  Every year, their favorite bird to imitate is the Pigeon, as we have a fun song and game with counting Pigeons “Three Blue Pigeons”.
 
Pigeons:  Coooo, Cooo   and make a warbling sound with your tongue while saying it.
 
With the Elementary students in Kindermusik for the Young Child, we also actively listen, and imitate – but then we transfer the bird sounds into rhythms that we learn to write.  For example: 
 
Cu-ckoo can be rhythmically written as   “ta-ta-sh-sh”  or 2 quarter notes and 2 rests.
 
Robin:  Cheerio  – written as “ti-ti ta”  or 2 eighth notes & a quarter note.
 
Isn’t it fascinating how exploring birds and their sounds with your child can lead to so many learning experiences – and it doesn’t cost a THING ! 
 
Just yesterday at the BIRTHDAY BASH at Explorations V Children’s Museum here in Lakeland, they introduced their  BORN LEARNING TRAIL…”an activity trail turning everyday moments into learning opportunities!”
 
I had the privilege of drawing attention to the Talk, Listen, and Sing exhibit on the trail, and had a wonderful time exploring 10 different bird sounds with children of all ages.   If you get a chance, check out that exhibit – I am donating a “FEATHERS” book (from the Village program) that shows pictures of many different birds, including word art with the sounds they make.   A few you might not think of:
Kookaburra:  “HA – ha-ha-ha-ha”  With accent on first sound.
Bluebird:  “Tru-ly,  Tru-ly”  rising to a high pitch on ‘ly”
 
Have fun talking about the birds, listening to and imitating the bird sounds, and singing any songs you might know about birds. 
 
What songs do YOU know about birds ?  
What book would you recommend that can help explore different birds with their sounds!
What websites are appropriate for children to listen to and learn about birds? 

Peekaboo, I Love You ! Connecting with babies

Peekaboo scarvesThe game “peekaboo” is the most basic of parent-baby games, yet one of the richest.  In one simple gesture, baby’s beloved adult magically appears in response to baby’s desire – smiling, looking only at baby, telling baby with face and eyes alight, “I am here just for you, whenever you need me; you are adorable, and I love you so much!”  No wonder babies have a seemingly unending appetite for this game!

This game is played in every country and every home that has children.  In our newest semester of Village, specific to babies, we learn to say “I See You” in many languages.  And there are many other such songs and games that have been gathered from homes around the world, and shared in the upcoming summer semester of 

Peek-a-booPeek-A-Boo, I Love You !

This program is specifically designed for families that want to offer their baby (2 – 18 months) and opportunity to freely explore music in a variety of ways, creatively interacting with a parent (or grandparent), and with other babies and their parents.  Ooooh, I just LOVE this baby time !

Peekaboo, I Love You!  Is a semester full of activities that celebrate the games that help develop relationship between a baby and her most important teachers – mom, dad, grandparents, siblings, and close friends.   The included activities are inspired by songs and baby games from many countries around the world and the special love between a parent and child.   These activities become personal rituals which strengthen the family bonds, and make the daily routines more special.  These activities stand up to the test of time because babies learn so much from them.

Includes FIVE  45 min. classes.  Each day focuses on a different theme:

  • I See You !
  • I Will Be Happy
  • Love Somebody
  • Good Old Summertime
  • I Love You !

A  FABULOUS set of home materials makes sure the learning continues ALL summer long:

  • Peekaboo kitQuality CD that includes all the music and rhymes from class, and more
  • a color poster with developmental thoughts and activity ideas
  • a duck puppet/bath mitt
  • a Ducky Gertie Ball (soft and spongy – way fun!)
  • and a variety of handouts full of ideas and resources

 There are TWO WAYS to participate in this semester.

  • Once a week for 5 weeks:  FRIDAYS:  June 19, 26, and July 3, 17, and 24.   
    • 9:30 am
  • Every 3rd SATURDAY for 5 months:  June 20, July 18, Aug. 15, Sept. 19,  Oct. 17.  
    • 9:30 am.

Enroll soon to save your place in this fun summer camp for babies! 

 

What baby song/activity most interests YOUR child?

We have a discussion group about these routines and rituals on my

Music Connections Facebook Page.

Please visit, become a FAN and join in the sharing.

How can you teach music to BABIES?

People ask me,  “How can you teach music to babies?”  As part of the full Kindermusik curricullum, the Village program is designed for babies from infancy up to 18 months old.   Why start so young? 

I Love it when you sing and dance with me.

I Love it when you sing and dance with me.

That’s easy to answer.  Every experience they have now helps to build a foundation for learning.  Music excites the brain, getting it ready to learn.  When music is paired with a positive learning experience, it builds stronger connections, and a inner desire to learn more.  The musical experiences a baby has now provides a framework, not only for their further music learning, but also for the development of the whole child. 
Many parents already do so many things at home that aid in their child’s development, and offer their children the rich heritage of songs that they grew up with.  This is SOOO important in the life of a child, and every time a mother or father sings to their child, or chants nursery rhymes, or dances around the room to music, they are creating wonderful learning experiences for their child.   KEEP doing that even if you never step into a Kindermusik classroom.
My mom loved to sing and shared a lot of children’s songs and song from our Polish culture with me as I grew up.  I LOVED sharing these with my baby when he was so young.  But I did get tired of singing the same songs and lullabies.  I needed something MORE to offer MY brain, as well as for my son.
 
I got together with other families and we learned each other’s songs.  That was fun, and I learned several new activities.  I also went to the library and checked out MORE music, but it did not always turn out to be appropriate for my baby.
THEN I found Kindermusik.
Kindermusik is like a LIBRARY full of great music and books, specifically designed for each age group, and the Kindermusik educator is like a great friend who just loves to share these materials along with ideas and information with parents and families.  And I do, I really do.
 
The Village curriculum was actually developed by a creative team of professional who are both educators AND parents themselves, who did the research on what is BEST for babies, and ties it together with folk music from around the world, offering NEW songs and activities in each of the 10 semesters that are offered for this age.  That is WAY better than I can do as one person, even WITH a BS degree in Music Therapy.
There are so many CRITICAL developmental issues at this young age.  Through Kindermusik, babies are exposed to the musical sounds and experiences that are important to their musical development.  Because of the variety of music and HIGH quality of the arrangements and recordings, they experience a wide variety of sounds, timbres and rhythms they might not normally hear.  They get to explore musical instruments on their own terms and develop pathways for steady beat, timbre discrimination, and expressiveness.
Besides music education, we also USE music to focus on each area of development, creating an environment which stimulates the growth of the whole child. 
Musical phrases are much like sentences.  Rhyming words of nursery rhymes and finger plays are excellent for building foundations for speech and language.
 
Through movement and dance activities, babies develop their vestibular and proprioceptive systems and establish neural foundations for concepts such as high and low.  And mom’s learn how to encourage movements that help the different sides of the brain communicate more effectively. 
Parents comments are especially focused on how impressed they are at how the music opens up their child’s personality and lets it shine through, even as a baby.
With or without Kindermusik, MUSIC provides an excellent beginning for babies, and as we know:
 
A good beginning never ends
Kindermusik just makes it EASIER, and provides a fully fertile playground.