Kindermusik | Fostering Musical Curiosity
Dreary spring weather can't dampen the joy in Classroom 2 of Madison Street Musics & Arts Academy.
In the happy, lavender-colored studio, I met with Abby Haake—the owner of Clarksville's Kindermusik studio.
With a doctorate in performing arts, Abby wanted to give back to the families and children in Clarksville using her degree. In 2012, she started her Kindermusik studio as a perfect blending of the two.
Kindermusik is a music-based early-learning curriculum that originated in Germany in 1978.. Music is unique because it engages all parts of the brain allowing for faster learning and retention. Using musical concepts, lessons emphasize soft skills such as active listening, sharing, turn taking, socialization, communication, and fine motor skills all through musical play. It also introduces children to a variety of instruments.
Regardless of the age or musical ability of students, Abby is passionate about ensuring each child gets the most out of Kindermusik.
“If you came to a class this spring and the same class that same summer, they would be different.” She said.
"After the first couple classes, I get to know the kids. Then, I modify the curriculum based on how they learn best.”
“Depending on the class, we may need to work more on sharing and turn taking. Since each lesson has a structure and pattern, the kids learn that if they wait, their turn comes.”
Each child comes with their own caregiver – who also take part in the activities with the child.
“Classes are also an opportunity for the children to bond with their caregiver.”
These caregivers often form a community of their own too. Abby reminisced about moms who brought their child and found a safe space to build relationships with others with kids a similar age.
“I love it when I hear moms talking about scheduling play dates outside of class. It's like building a village."
Semesters run for 12 weeks and each 45-minute lesson follows a predictable structure.
The class starts by singing “Hello.” Around the room, each child shares an action – such as jumping or waving - to pair with the song. Then everyone sings the song together to the child who chose the action.
Hello, hello let's JUMP together
Hello, hello let's JUMP hello
Hello, hello, let's JUMP together
JUMP together, JUMP hello
The class then transitions to activities which vary with each lesson. Some include learning about musical instruments, playing instruments together, playing games, and singing.
At the conclusion of activities, the children snuggle with the caregiver who brought them. This signals a transition during the class time from activity to listening as the lesson's story starts.
There is also a clean-up song, a goodbye song, and each student receives a sticker when they leave.
Abby loves the sense of comradeship and investment in the students' lives from the entire class. “When a student in the class reaches a milestone, we all celebrate together.” This milestone varies by the class. For the infant class, it may be crawling. For older classes - it may be speaking up and answering a question.
Sound like the perfect outing for you and your little one?
Enrollment for the fall semester is open now, and Abby offers themed play-dates monthly. Virtual classes provide an online option for those families who cannot attend in person!
As you head to Kindermusik—look for signs for Madison Street Music & Arts Center and you'll be in the right place!