Heartland Music Together Review
We first encountered Heartland Music Together at The Mommy Nest's Baby Fair earlier this year. As soon as my 3.5 year old and 1.5 year old spotted their booth with all the musical instruments, they made a beeline and started playing immediately. When it was time to move on, we had to tear them away because they were having so much fun. I knew I would have to check into these classes for my boys.
I have three boys under the age of 4 and the youngest one is only a month old. Most other classes we have looked into wouldn't allow all three kids to participate. Heartland Music Together offers Mixed-Age Classes for babies through 5 years old, so it was perfect for us. There are classes located in various parts of Louisville with multiple days and times to choose from. It was easy to find a class close to us that worked with our schedule.
On our first day we met our teacher, Miss Alisa. Miss Alisa is very friendly and is great with kids. After playing with a giant drum for a few minutes, she started the class by explaining the two rules.
The first is that everyone must walk - use our "walking feet" - and not run. The second rule is that parents need to participate, even if it makes us uncomfortable. She explained that if our kids see us having fun and singing and dancing, they would be more likely to participate, too. That second rule made me nervous, but it made a lot of sense, so I gave it a try. It was actually a lot of fun and all of the parents got into the music so no one needed to worry about looking silly.
Miss Alisa also explained that in the class, children did not have to follow her directions. They could explore the room, sit quietly and watch, or do their own thing because all kids learn differently. As long as they didn't run and weren't being too disruptive to others, we shouldn't force them to do everything the teacher was doing. Of course, my two older boys took this as license to go crazy and they proceeded to run around the classroom breaking their only rule. My husband and I were embarrassed, but Miss Alisa kept telling us it was normal and she never got upset or annoyed. Her patience will all of the students seems to be endless and she really seems to enjoy teaching.
With all the instructions out of the way, we started with the Welcome Song and then didn't stop until it was time to wind things down at the end of class.
There were a lot of different songs and the children experimented with scarves, egg shakers, and lots of percussion instruments. They also created rhythms by clapping, stomping, and moving their bodies. We were given a song book with additional information about the classes and a CD with all the songs we will be learning over the next few weeks. The class was a little chaotic, but everyone was having a good time.
On our second week, I was amazed to see the progress of all the kids in the class. Everyone seemed to be more focused this time. Some of the kids who had sat quietly the first week were now participating. Some of the kids who had just done their own thing the first week were singing the songs and dancing along. My own boys were paying attention and getting involved - and they didn't run! We had even more fun during this second class as we sang some songs from the first week and learned a couple of new songs. Miss Alisa has a beautiful voice and has a lot of fun working with kids. She explains things in a way that kids and parents understand her even when she is explaining complicated musical concepts.
Of course, my 1 month old can't really participate, but I hold him throughout the class and do all the movements with him. He also hears the singing and sees all the activity around him. Miss Alisa also gave me a book about how to get younger babies involved and how music can shape their development. Throughout the two classes we have been to, he has not gotten fussy at all, so I think he is enjoying himself.
It's also been a lot of fun seeing my two older boys interact together in this class. Their personalities are so different but they have both enjoyed these classes. Sometimes they laugh and giggle together while singing a song and sometimes they do their own thing. It's so interesting to watch how they each interpret instructions and how they each choose to get involved with the class.
I am also seeing the benefits of these classes at home. After our first class, my oldest son asked me to find our musical instruments and both older boys have spent a lot of time over the past couple of weeks playing with them. They have also been singing and clapping much more frequently - even when watching TV. And, it's been a lot easier getting them to walk instead of run. Whenever they get crazy we remind them to use their "walking feet" and they immediately slow down. Music is such an important part of child development and I'm so excited for my boys to be getting more exposure to many different types of music and musical concepts.
I'm looking forward to seeing the continued benefits of these classes as we finish the series. I would highly recommend Heartland Music Together to any parent looking for a solid music foundation for their kids. Not only will your kids learn a lot but you will have a lot of fun learning and playing with them!
Summer pre-registration starts May 12 for currently enrolled families, and May 26 for new and returning families.
Don't forget that Mommy Nest Egg Card holders also get $10 Off Registration Fee
Limit One Use per Family per Enrollment Period. For more details, CLICK HERE