Music Wonderland (MW) Age 3
Music Wonderland (MW) is designed to provide children with an introduction to music in a positive and enjoyable atmosphere. Together with their parents, children experience singing, introductory keyboard activities, movement, and listening to music. Music Wonderland lays the foundation for a lifetime of enjoyable music making through these carefully planned activities.
1-2 semesters depending on student’s age
One class per week
Children must have reached their 3rd birthday by September 15 for fall semester classes and by February 15th for a spring semester start. This requirement helps ensure that children are enrolled in a course for which they are developmentally ready.
The in-class musical experiences establish a foundation for musical ability and cultivate a lifelong love of music.
- Listening Ability: As this is a most significant period of aural development, a rich and varied array of listening activities develops sensitivity and listening ability and enables students to perceive music's power to vividly express images and emotions.
- Social Development: Because of the importance of the parent in the life of a child this age, interaction between parent and child is an important focus in the group lessons. Also, through the group lessons children develop the basic skills of relating to other children and adults.
- Keyboard Experience: Children experience sound through the keyboard and are introduced to the fun of keyboard playing. Appropriate to this stage in their physical development, initial playing activities engage the use of large motor skills.
- Cultivation of the Imagination: Recognizing the significance of fantasy, play, and the imagination in the learning of children of this age, the activities, textbooks, and music are filled with suitable colorful, playful imagery, sounds, and subjects.
Upon Completion of the Course
For students and parents, the course establishes an outstanding foundation and motivation for enriched study and skill development in the Junior Music Course.
Junior Music Course (JMC) Ages 4-5
Junior Music Course (JMC) is 2-year program for children beginning at ages 4 or 5 that provides an incomparable foundation for future musical study on any instrument. Children learn basic musical skills such as singing, music reading and writing, playing the keyboard, ear training and creating music.
2 years leading to advanced Yamaha JMC class
One 50-minute class per week, with 10 minutes for homework check / class change
Classes are designed for 8-10 students
To enroll in JMC, children must have reached their 4th birthday by September 1st for fall semester classes and by February 15th for spring semester classes. This requirement helps ensure that children are enrolled in a course for which they are developmentally ready.
One parent attends with each child. This format motivates children and allows them to develop ensemble skills and cooperation within a supportive community of friends and parents. When parents actively participate in their child’s music lessons and home practice, they can together cultivate a lifelong love for music. Children become part of a musical team with their teacher and parents; the class becomes their musical community.
JMC students are taught a comprehensive curriculum that includes ear-training using solfege, rhythm and notation, music appreciation, creativity and singing of the various musical styles. Activities are specifically designed to be dynamic and timed to meet the attention span of 4-5 year olds. Yamaha course books, CDs, DVDs, and the musical laptop bring color and life to make sophisticated musical concepts fun and approachable for young kids. The in-class musical experiences nurture creativity and help instill the basis for playing and expression through feeling and understanding music.
- Hearing: Listening to wonderful music helps children to develop emotional sensitivity, an ear for music and to feel and express music in time rhythmically.
- Singing: Children love to sing! Singing develops self expression, correct tempo, rhythm, pitch and understanding of note names.
- Playing: Performing songs introduces children to the joy of expressing music by themselves. Playing also helps students to become familiar with the five-line staff and keyboard and express music with both hands.
- Creating: Junior Music Course experiences cultivate children's musical creativity and sense of harmony.
Young Musicians Course (YMC) Ages 6-8
The Young Musicians Course (YMC) is founded on the belief that every child loves music. During this three-year program, children participate in activities that teach basic musical skills and encourage independence, creativity and self-expression. The course appeals to the imagination of a young mind and becomes an integral part of your child's growth. For beginning musicians ages 6-8, class activities include ear training, keyboard repertoire, keyboard harmony, music theory, exposure to arranging, singing, ensemble playing and improvisation.
2 years leading to advanced courses
One 55-minute class per week
Classes are designed for 8 -10 students
To enroll in YMC, children must have reached their 6th birthday by September 1st for fall semester classes and by February 15th for spring semester classes. This requirement helps ensure that children are enrolled in a course for which they are developmentally ready.
Musicianship is taught through the use of a keyboard. Children will be involved in the following activities:
- Solfege: Singing develops self expression, correct tempo, rhythm, pitch and understanding of note names
- Repertoire (keyboard pieces): Performing songs introduces children to the joy of expressing music by themselves. Playing also helps students to become familiar with the five-line staff and keyboard and express music with both hands.
- Ear Training: An important part of the course, developing the ear and listening skills will aid the students in future to play music by-ear, improvise, and even compose.
- Ensemble playing (group performance): Performing in groups allows students to develop a better sense of rhythm, tempo, balance and even song form, thus deepening their understanding of music. Plus, it’s so fun!
- Keyboard Harmony
- Keyboard technique
- Sight singing
- Sight playing
Upon Completion of the Course
Once your child has completed the Young Musicians Course, he or she can take the Yamaha Student Grade 9 Exam to confirm his or her musical achievement. Teachers refer to the exam results to correctly place students in advanced courses of study such as the Junior Advanced Course. As the children develop more advanced musical skills, they are also encouraged to express themselves by performing and composing their own music through programs like the Junior Original Concert.