Time to get your kids started in music? Yes! Where should you go and how should they learn music? Let's find out!
What can preschoolers learn about music? Can preschoolers learn music online? What is learning music? Are preschoolers too young to learn to read music? Should my preschooler start an instrument?
We’ll answer these questions right here! Hi, my name is Elias Berlinger. I’m the co-founder of My Music Workshop. We’ve taught music to kids for 12 years and we’ve been honored to do it. I’ve learned a lot about preschoolers over the years. My favorite things about preschoolers are their honesty and their eagerness to share their view of the world. I could write a book about the funny things 4 year old’s have said to me over the years!
As it relates to music I love preschoolers too. They are so much more capable than I first thought. I’ve had two years old's reading music! Granted it was simple patterns with things like quarter, or whole notes but nonetheless, they can do it.
Another thing I’ve learned about young kids is that they are sponges. But, the only way they can absorb something they learn is by being engaged and interested in it. You can’t force them to learn anything. That is where My Music Workshop’s journey to teach music to preschoolers began, in 2009.
My wife Lianna and I started working with preschools all over southern California and we set out to create, from scratch, the best possible music program for kids. We knew there were other preschool music programs but we didn’t want to repeat what had been done, we wanted to use our own experience of working directly with preschoolers to discover what musical concepts they could learn, how they learned them, how well they remembered them and ultimately how far into learning music we could take them.
We, of course, had to make it all fun! Let me just say that through a lot of music classes covering subjects from reading music to discovering instrument families to learning the basics of the piano we found the edge of where we could go and how to teach music to preschool students.
Once we discovered something, we’d do it over and over with different groups to make sure that we found the exact, best way to deliver the lesson in a way that taught, engaged and was memorable. Ultimately the curriculum covered a wide variety of musical subjects and we used stories, activities, music, sounds, poems, illustrations, characters, repetition the educational style where we attach a new concept to an idea that kids already know about to make it more memorable. For example, when teaching kids about notes, we use the words “belly” to represent the inside of the note head, and “tail” to represent the stem. By characterizing these elements of learning to read music, the kids remember what musical notes look like because they see them as characters, rather than new and abstract symbols.
We used this idea all over the curriculum and it worked wonders to be able to teach the
preschoolers what I consider to be pretty advanced musical concepts. I also had the time of my life creating this curriculum that we ultimately called “Little Music Masters.”
What do we cover? Well, most preschoolers are a little too young to start learning to play an instrument. But, they can learn tons of other cool things about music. We teach them how to identify musical notes and begin reading music, we teach them about different kinds of instruments, how they work, the sounds they make, how their used etc., we teach them rhythm, about the beat, about patterns in songs, patterns in music, things like tempo (fast and slow), dynamics (loud and soft), and pitch (high and low). We do this all in a way that’s engaging to young children so that they are interested and want to learn more.
That leads us to right now, where this entire curriculum has just been elevated to what I believe is it’s best format, online and available to anyone at www.mymusicworkshop.com! Why would I think that online is the best iteration of “Little Music Masters?” Well, because the curriculum has so many elements like characters, sounds, visuals and more and we have been able to use the online format to bring all of these things together into cohesive, perfectly timed online lessons with supporting activities that enhance the learning.
I’m also a father of a young daughter and an elementary aged son. And, since I’m also an educator I’ve closely observed how they learn and how they consume online content. For example, my son got so into drawing from an amazing online art program. It was the first time he’d been interested in drawing and he was completely engaged with the learning format.
My daughter watches online educational content and I can’t believe what she remembers! We’ll be out somewhere and she’ll point out and name, every kind of tractor, excavator and otherwise, just from learning online.
We have tested the online music learning format that we offer at mymusicworkskhop.com with kids and they’ve loved it! We do offer it to families, as many kids as are in the family at one price. You can also try it out free for a week! If your kids don’t get something from it right away cancel and you won’t be charged a penny. You can give it a go by clicking HERE!
But, in addition to preschool part of the curriculum we’ve brought in even more music learning so that your child can grow with the program into their elementary years. We even offer instrument lessons for piano, ukulele and drums. All of these are always up and available on the site and can be accessed whenever it’ convenient. We’ve broken lessons up into small chunks so kids clearly know what to practice and can work on a single aspect of playing an instrument before moving on to the next thing.
Most of all, Lianna and I want to share our love of music with your family. We were lucky enough to both grow up with musical parents so were exposed from early childhood. We grew to study, play instruments and ultimately love music so much that all we could do is share the joy with our students in the best way we can.
We hope you love our My Music Workshop program and that it instill a lifelong love of music in your kids, while also teaching them really cool musical stuff!