Lately I've been looking into mommy and me type programs that the babies can go to once they're able to sit up on their own or even possibly sooner. I recently learned of a Mommy and Me type program called "Music by Mar" in our area and that it was free to infants under eight months so I looked into it. I found out they have one pretty close to our house and so I spoke with the lady who runs that location. She explained to me what it was all about and so I was really interested. Here is some info to explain what the program is about:
What makes “Music with Mar.” different?
Whereas some music classes focus on teaching to the little musician, Music with Mar. classes teach to the whole child using music. The child’s music abilities can be nurtured along with motor, social, language, safety and cognitive skills. A good music foundation for later on as well as an all around good academic foundation is laid out through the use of well thought out lyrics and movements.
Music with Mar. is a class where a caregiver and a child participate together in musical activities which enhance the four main areas of development-cognitive, social, motor and language. (THE ADULT attending MUST be able to participate with the child for the child to get the full benefit of the program.) A good music foundation, as well as an all around good academic foundation, is laid through the use of well thought out lyrics and movements.
Music with Mar. classes:
focus on the total development of the child, and not on musicality
know that children learn best through play and activation of many senses provide an environment where the parent and child are comfortable help children start to understand how to behave in this setting.
You know anything having to do with development and I'm sold! So this past Monday we tried it out! I came up with a way to bring both babies not need an extra hand. I brought that two Boppy pillows and stacked them next to me one on top of the of the other so I could put one of the baby is in the middle and they were able to sit upright easily with support. It worked brilliantly!
There was about 15 people there with their kids ranging from ages 8 months to 2 years. Obviously they were all regulars as they knew all the songs. Apparently they do most of the same things each class and change up a little in the middle. A friend of mine brought her 2 month old and all three of our babies were wide eyed the entire time. Between the music, the people, the props, it was a lot of commotion so their brains must have been going haywire! In the beginning the instructor went around the room with a frog puppet singing a song where the frog says their name and each kid would respond in song as well. When they went up to River he looked terrified with a look of worry and a single tear running down his cheek. And he was the one sitting on my lap! I had flash forwards of him being afraid of Disney characters. When it was Riley's turn she was wide eyed with a huge smile on her face. So cute! My friend's baby seemed to like it too!
They brought out different things for kids and parents to play with for each song. One had us hitting sticks on each syllable of all the kids around the room. We marched with bell bracelets and danced in our seats moving the babies' arms and legs to the beat. While it was a little advanced for where the twins are at developmentally, I still think it is a valuable experience for them. Something new to make connections in their growing brains. So I'll definitely go back again. :-)
Here is the link to the company if you are interested in seeing if they have any classes in your area: