Music for Young Children® was created in 1980 by Frances Balodis, an Education Specialist and Registered Music Teacher, in order to teach music to her two young children. The resulting curriculum was a comprehensive combination of keyboard, singing, rhythm, ear training, sight reading, theory, history and composition taught using fun and creative activities.
MYC® curriculum is carefully geared and paced to the abilities and learning styles of each particular age group. Accompanied by a parent or caregiver, children meet in small age-specific classes for one hour each week throughout the school-calendar year. Children graduate from MYC with preliminary rudiments and the performance skills needed to take the Grade One piano exam. MYC offers several entry points for children of various ages. The following diagram illustrates how a child progresses through MYC’s multi-year curriculum.
As children participate in MYC, their understanding of music expands into positive problem-solving skills, areas of self-expression, growing memory skills and excellent self-confidence and self-esteem.
MYC Certified Teachers have met specific piano performance and theory qualifications and have received special program training. They provide a child-centered musical environment to facilitate development in all curriculum areas. MYC teachers are committed to parent involvement and to nurturing learning, children and families.
Parents and Caregivers:
Parent or caregiver involvement is key to a child’s success in MYC. By participating in class, adults become aware of children’s learning styles, strengths and interests, and are able to guide them during practice time. Previous music education is not required to be a successful guide. However, it is recommended that the same adult participates throughout the entire year to maintain consistency for the child.
MYC classes provide a special time for adults and children to learn together while strengthening their relationships. And, as an added bonus, adults can view MYC’s participation requirement as inexpensive “two-for-one” lessons that can strengthen their own musical skill set!
Children are the center of MYC! The curriculum is presented with dynamic teaching aids that capture children’s attention and excite their imaginations. Age-appropriate learning groups help children to excel in their musical studies. MYC offers several program levels: Music Pups (newborn to 4 yrs), Sunrise (2 to 4 yrs), Sunshine (3 to 4 yrs), Sunbeams (5 to 7 yrs), and Moonbeams (7 to 10 yrds).
MYC is the perfect program for children with no previous musical experience as well as those who have already developed a love for music. It provides a strong foundation for future piano studies, pursuing a second instrument or simply developing a life-long enjoyment of music.
Equipment and Supplies:
Students in all MYC classes, except Music Pups & Sunrise, need daily access to a keyboard for practice time. Acoustic pianos are ideal, but many families begin with digital keyboards which are relatively inexpensive and provide lots of “extra” fun. When researching keyboards, look for 61 full-sized keys and touch-sensitivity, if possible. Be creative in searching for an instrument…perhaps you can borrow one from a friend or relative!
The curriculum fee covers your child’s music kit and other related supplies needed for the class. The teacher will supply pencils, crayons and other supplies needed during class time.
MYC is more than simply a “music lesson”, it is a commitment to your child’s music education. Please encourage consistent and positive practice habits from the very first lesson. The teacher will provide home assignments at each lesson for you to use as a practice guide.
At the beginning of the year, entry level students will be asked to practice about three to five minutes per day. Practice requirements will increase gradually throughout the year to about fifteen to twenty minutes per day. Maintaining these short, daily practices will help your child master the concepts presented in class and will build his/her confidence.
To get the best results from practice time, remember the following tips:
- Be consistent with short, daily practices.
- Choose a time of the day when your child is at his/her best.
- Sit with your child and join in his/her practice time.
- Take time to review new concepts from class.
- Start and end practices with something fun.
- Give lots of praise just for trying!
There will be days when your child will not want to practice — this is normal! If you find your child is consistently resisting practice time, please contact your teacher and ask for help. Please do not miss a lesson because of a “bad practice” week. These, too, are normal and missing the next class will put your child further behind and risk him/her becoming discouraged.
Your insights assist us in successfully teaching your child. Please take time to talk with your teacher about your concerns or struggles. Seemingly huge problems can often be resolved quickly by talking together and finding creative alternatives for your child. Also, please remember to share your child’s interests and achievements … we like to join you in celebrating his/her successes!