EARLY MUSIC CLASSES

This year at WSPA we are excited to share with you and your child a variety of musical experiences that we know will have a life-long effect on your child and will encourage his/her harmonious growth through the development of their music aptitude.

'One's potential to learn is never greater than at the moment of birth? (Edwin E. Gordon) !

During early years of life, in fact, the brain is extremely "plastic," meaning it is more malleable, sensitive, and adaptable to its environment.

In this heightened stage of brain development, immersing children in a rich music environment and encouraging them to explore and absorb music respecting their own times, is a lifelong gift for their music development and will have a profound impact on the extent to which he or she will be able to understand, appreciate, and achieve in music as an adult.

Our classes are designed to create a stimulating and playful environment where music itself becomes the toy. Children are encouraged to interact with the music in the way they feel most comfortable, with

Classes will all include singing and chanting for the children in a wide variety of tonalities and meters, and moving to music.

Songs are performed without words, which helps children focus on the musical content. 

Natural voice and a free flowing, continuous spatial movement and deep breathing are the other essential tools in our classes.

The youngest babies respond to class activities with rapt attention as they soak up the musical sounds. Older children begin to explore with their voices and their bodies.

Any vocal or physical response the child makes becomes part of the activity and a springboard for creating a music dialogue. Facilitating music interaction and building upon children's natural responses are key components of our music class.

"Correct" responses will not be required of children: they will be given the opportunity to explore their musical environment in the same way that they were given the opportunity to explore their language environment. Each child's uniqueness is valued.

Children are exposed to a vocabulary of tonal and rhythm patterns, not single notes, as basic units of meaning in music and roughly analogous to words in language.

Eventually, they begin to give random responses to the music, including their own "dances" and vocal babble. When they get older, many students develop their musical skills so that they can echo tonal and rhythmic patterns accurately, sing in tune, and move exactly with the musical beat. As this occurs, children's music vocabulary grows in leaps and bounds and they attain the music readiness for audiation, the ability to comprehend and think music.

Please have a look at our music classes' descriptions and feel free to contact Angie at WSPA for further information. Classes will be guided by Stefania Cappellari, piano teacher and certified Early Childhood Music Educator at the Gordon Italian Association for Music Learning (AIGAM- Associazione Italiana Gordon per l?Apprendimento Musicale).

TINY TOES MUSIC for babies and toddlers, 0 to 36 months

Based on the Music Learning Theory by Edwin E. Gordon, the course represent a first and very important step towards the child?s musical development.

The first three years of life are, in fact, an extraordinary and unique learning window for developing our baby?s inborn music aptitude and being able to understand and love music in future.

During the class, children are left free to listen and absorb naturally the music surrounding them, to nurture their expressive, emotional and communicative skills and explore the music through the body, movement and voice.

The class is also an opportunity for parents to share significant experiences and precious moments with their child in a happy, stimulating and relaxing environment.

Frequency and duration: once a week (date/timings tbc), 3 classes options (0-12, 12-24, 24-36 months), 30 to 45 minutes depending on the age group; 8 to 10 children per group accompanied by one parent (or child's caregiver)

 

STICKY FINGERS for toddlers and young children, 3 to 5 years old

Chanting, singing, playing and moving to develop musical thinking, rhythmic perception and body coordination. To think in music. To share the fun together and grow up in harmony.

The course is an ideal continuation of the path started between 0 and 36 months, but can also be the first approach to music for children aged three, four and five, when important music skills start to emerge. The focus is still on respecting each children?s learning pace and developing their inner instrument.

Frequency and duration: 45 minutes, once a week (no parents required)

 

MUSIC ALPHABET WORKSHOPS for 6 years old and above

Instruments are simply what we choose for expression of musical ideas but the music itself is what's in the mind' (Harriet Ayer Seymour)

Plenty of games and musical activities to fully immerse children into music through singing, moving, listening and improvising.

The main objective of these workshops is to develop students' audiation, our "inner" instrument, essential for developing musicianship. This way, playing an instrument becomes an extension of children's musical person: with senses of tonality and meter, good intonation, consistent tempo, and good rhythm, they will make their instrument reveal those attributes. 

During the workshops, children don't play instruments nor they receive theoretical classes. Instead, they experience music and its main functions, syntax and rhythm on their bodies, through singing, chanting, and moving in various tonalities and metres. Just as a language vocabulary provides the basis for understanding and communicating ideas and thoughts, rhythm and tonal patterns, the "words" of music, learnt in the "context" of a meter or a tonality, will be soon a rich vocabulary and an essential base for becoming a musical thinker and performer, or to simply enjoy music with comprehension.

For students who are already enrolled in a piano/instrumental course it will be a great opportunity to reinforce their musical skills and work specifically on the aural preparation required by the Guildhall and ABRSM examination programmes. For students new to the world of music it is a very important educational step to grasp the basic of music in preparation to learn an instrument.

 Frequency and duration: 90 minutes group class, twice a month (on Sundays but timings and dates to be confirmed)