Many parents may wonder how in the world a little baby can make music! Every child’s development benefits from early exposure to music and movement. Nothing stimulates your baby's rapidly growing brain like music & movement! Plus, making music is a profoundly satisfying way to interact with, bond with & soothe your baby. The earlier you start your baby in Music Together® classes, the more development you will be able to witness- from language to fine & gross motor skills to making social interactions. Infants may attend a mixed-age class, whether registered on their own or attending free (up to age 6 months) with an older sibling. Meet other parents with babies and learn fascinating music activities and catchy new tunes you can recreate at home with your baby. Babies are welcome in any of our mixed-age classes here.
What age are the babies in a Music Together class? Babies range from only a few weeks old to several months. As soon as you are ready to get out of the house, your baby is ready for class! If you can talk to your baby, you can sing to him/her!
Whoa. Music for babies?! Yes! Nothing stimulates a baby's brain like music! And little babies are like sponges- soaking up all kinds of information around them! From small finger-play songs, to large jumping & swinging songs, your trained teacher will lead you through a variety of activities, facilitating fun and creative ways for you to interact musically with your baby, while stimulating her cognitive, physical & emotional development. Your teacher can explain the ‘whys’ behind the ‘whats’ and point out emerging musical behaviors in your baby.
Why aren’t there separate classes for different age groups? In the 1980s Music Together pioneered the development of the mixed-age approach in early childhood music. In each class we strive to create a musically rich, developmentally appropriate environment where the whole family can enjoy music and nurture skills at the level right for each child. While the children do have plenty of opportunities to interact with each other, our primary focus is on facilitating musical interaction between you & your baby. Mixed-age classes also provide a rich learning environment because children of different ages thrive when they interact with each other: the babies are often fascinated by the older child, and the "big" children enjoy helping and sharing with the "little" ones. This approach is based on research from music education, early childhood development, and family relationships.
At what age should I start class with my baby? As soon as you are ready to get out of the house with your new baby! Babies learn music the same way they learn language; by being immersed in it. Just as it is never too early to start talking to your baby, it is never too early to start singing with your baby!
Research indicates that singing and dancing with your baby will have a positive effect not only on his music development specifically, but his brain development as a whole. In addition, we also see the wonderful benefits that moms, dads, and other primary caregivers get from bonding through music. Research suggests that stress hormones decrease in both the infant and the adult when that adult sings to her little one! Imagine having a rough day, and now your baby just doesn't want to settle down for the night (or even an hour!). Bouncing, strolling, rocking.... nothing seems to work, and you're just getting more anxious. Raise your voice and sing -- even if it doesn't calm your baby right away, it will help you to breathe more calmly and settle your own mind. Your baby feels you, and will respond to your changed mood. Remember, YOUR VOICE is precious to your baby. It doesn't have to be perfect. Yet it will always be remembered.
Articles of Interest
Is Music for Wooing, Mothering, Bonding - or Is It just "Auditory Cheesecake"? by Carl Zimmer from Discover Magazine, December 2010
Does Singing To Your Baby Really Work? by Kimberly Sena Moore from Psychology Today's Blog "Your Musical Self", July 29, 2011