When my son, Davis, was a baby, I wanted music to be part of his personal growth to expand learning and social skills. I searched the web and found Colors Fine Arts Center, Inc. in Madison. I noticed they offered a free introductory class so I sent a quick email and scheduled our first Musical Tots class. My son was just 9 months old.
To say that both of us love this class would be an understatement. Many people ask what we do during these music classes. Many are so skeptical or think it is a waste of time – they think these children begin classes on a piano or exploring sheet music. I explain the instruments, the activities, and the fun. Davis’s pediatrician was thrilled when I mentioned we attended music class at such a young age.
The Musical Tots & Musical Seasons Program at Colors
Juliana Johnson is our music teacher. She offers the Musical Tots class for ages 14-36 months and the Musical Season class for ages 3 years to 5 years.
Musical Tots, a 30 minute group class, is a music and movement class which caters to the quickly developing minds and bodies of toddlers. Activities focus on enhancing verbal skills through songs and patterns. Fine and gross motor activities are also incorporated. Rhythm sticks, rattles, scarves and hand drums are explored in each class, which includes songs, finger plays, circle dances and rhythm games. A parent (or grandparent) participates with their toddler during each class.
The Musical Seasons group class is a 45 minute music and is a movement class designed around the preschooler’s world, which is one of exploration and excitement about learning. Memory, listening and language skills are enhanced through imaginative musical play. And basic music skills are developed through pitch matching and pattern imitation. Rhythm sticks, rattles, scarves and hand drums are explored in each class, with the use of songs and finger plays through the musical story. Circle dances and rhythm games are also included. During the Musical Seasons class, the preschooler attends the class independently without a parent. In each class, material alternates each semester, to provide new songs and games through a familiar method.
How Colors Has Affected My Family
Davis will be three when the new semester begins, so he will attend the Musical Seasons group class alone while I wait and listen outside the door. I have loved attending and participating in these classes with him. I am so sad I will no longer see his face, his expressions, and his joy as he continues his classes.
As a result of the Musical Tots group class, I have noticed many positive changes in him since we started a few years ago. He has made many new friends and he loves singing the hello and good bye songs to them. The Musical Tots class has also helped him learn to count, learn his colors, and learn his ABCs. He is also learning to share and wait his turn as others do independent skills. The class also helps with memory skills as the songs and activities are often repeated throughout the semester. We do many of these songs at home, in the car, at bedtime, or while eating. He loves to do the tickle songs to everyone he encounters.
When Davis first began classes he was mesmerized by Miss Juliana’s voice and would just stare at her as she sang. Now he knows the words and sings loudly in class. He also loves to play the bells, rhythm sticks, drum, and especially the resonator bars. He has gotten much more confident while doing the independent skills, such as verbally repeating tones and beats. These exercises have helped with his speech. Davis also loves to clap for his classmates as they do their independent skills. It is so fun to watch the other students evolve too. Every parent (or grandparent) cheers each student as new achievements are reached.
It is evident that Davis has a natural athletic ability, but I want him to be well rounded. I feel the Musical Tots class has given him a basis for a love of music. I want him to continue learning music after he ages out of Musical Seasons and I hope that he will take piano and then violin lessons. Playing a musical instrument would help him with finger dexterity and hand/eye coordination in sports.
The best part? Davis is having so much fun that he doesn’t realize how much he is learning and has learned since he was a baby. To improve a baby or child’s mind in that way is a great achievement for Colors Fine Arts Center.
Colors Fine Arts Center Details
You can check Color’s website for class dates, prices, or to request a free introductory class. In addition to Musical Tots and Musical Seasons, they also offer private lessons for piano, violin, voice, guitar, and woodwinds. Some group classes are offered, but with no more than four students in each class. These classes are also utilized by home school students, too.
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