3 Ways Music Boosts Social-Emotional Learning in ANY Environment

Social-emotional development can STILL happen in a COVID-Era learning environment.

Social-emotional learning is a critical piece to positive early childhood development, and we know that music can accelerate this growth.

But how can educators use music to boost social-emotional skills in physically-distanced or virtual classrooms? 

And what does it look like by age? Pair our free, colorful infographic with the quick tips below to keep track of SEL milestones and consider how music can elevate this critical piece of early development!

Download Kindermusik's free social-emotional learning infographic with our milestones-by-age guide!
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3 Ways Music-Based Rituals Help Alleviate Back-to-School Change

3 Ways Music-Based Rituals Alleviate Back-to-School Change

The past few months have brought lots of uncertainty and requirements for change in how we educate children. Change—especially for children in any capacity—is hard, but one thing always helps…music! Here are 3 quick tips on how music-based rituals can help alleviate transitions (like drop-off times and mask-wearing) and enhance child and family engagement. 

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Fun and Learning at NAEYC 2018

Kindermusik - NAEYC

As the first big snowstorm of the season rolled into Washington, D.C., so did well over 10,000 people, who came to learn, collaborate, and network at the largest early childhood education conference in the world. Educators, advocates, and other members of the early childhood service community filled the Walter E. Washington Convention Center from November 13-17, 2018, for NAEYC’s 2018 Annual Conference.

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Kindermusik Turns 40…and Celebrates with Educators at Professional Development Conference

Kindermusik Educators at 2018 Conference

From July 25 to July 29, 2018, the city of New Orleans—always up for a party—was brimming with even more music than usual. That’s because more than 250+ Kindermusik educators gathered at Loyola University to sing, dance, and celebrate their shared passion for enriching children’s lives through music. The occasion? The 40th Anniversary Kindermusik Educator Conference—three jam-packed days of bonding and professional development for Kindermusik’s remarkable community of licensed educators.

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Become a Children’s Music Teacher with Kindermusik

Kindermusik University - Children's Music Teacher Training

If you’ve ever thought seriously about teaching children’s music-and-movement classes, or have pondered the idea of opening your own music studio, you may feel daunted by all there is to consider, manage, and learn. Maybe you’ve put off your dream of becoming a children’s music teacher in favor of something that seems more realistic or practical. After all, building a business, mastering a curriculum, and figuring out how to teach fun, developmentally appropriate children’s music classes to demanding customers (sure, they’re cute, but kids can be tough!) is no small task.

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NHSA Preview: Using Music Rituals to Create Calm

NHSA

Kindermusik is thrilled to be presenting at the 45th Annual National Head Start Association (NHSA) Conference and Expo in Anaheim, California, from April 23-27, 2018. We’ll be sharing our expertise on all things music and movement in four fantastic sessions. We hope to see you there, but if you can’t make it, here’s a sneak peek at some of what we’ll be talking (and singing!) about:  Continue reading “NHSA Preview: Using Music Rituals to Create Calm”

Minneapolis Memories: Kindermusik Educators Take Over The City of Lakes

Close to 200 Kindermusik Educators from across the globe gathered together at the mind-blowing Mall of America in Minneapolis, Minnesota July 27-29 for three, fun-filled days of learning, connection, friendship, and, of course, shopping!

Wednesday evening Maestros were treated to a memorable reception at The Hard Rock Café joined by President and CEO, Scott Kinsey.

State Representative Drew Christensen - former Kindermusik kid!
State Representative Drew Christensen – former Kindermusik kid!

Thursday morning special guest, former Kindermusik kid, and the youngest candidate to ever be elected to Minnesota’s House of Representatives, Drew Christensen, opened the conference sharing how his Kindermusik experience attributed to his successful political career.

We were then introduced to Occupational Therapist, Paige Hays, who skillfully led us through The Brain Architecture Game, developed through a partnership of the Center on the Developing Child and the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. Look for an interview with Paige later this month!

Educators
Paige Hays

A conference highlight was meeting Stephanie Johnson, educator, therapist, and author of Baby Bare: A Bottom Up Approach to Growing Strong Brains and Bodies. Her informative presentation explored the body’s role in early learning. Educators took away valuable insights to share with families.

Other conference highlights include: hearing from special guest and marketing guru, Kari Switala on the importance of storytelling in marketing, class demonstrations led by Robyn Pearce and Helen Peterson, and watching Kindermusik legend, Carol Penney, and Maestro Louise MacDonald’s powerful presentation on Intergenerational Learning.

Conference is about connection!
Conference is about connection!

Outside the conference, Minneapolis offered a relaxing retreat to Minnehaha Falls with breathtaking waterfalls.

We can’t wait until next year’s conference in the Big Easy – New Orleans! Hope to see many of you once again – and perhaps some new faces as well!

Educator Spotlight: Louise MacDonald

Educator Spotlight

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Lovingly known as Miss Louise by all and adorably called “Miss Moo-eeze” by some, Louise MacDonald has been bringing Kindermusik into the hearts and lives of children and families in Novia Scotia since 2003 when she became a licensed educator.  She started her own Kindermusik business in the basement of her home 2005, but quickly outgrew the space.  The name Joyful Sounds Music Studio was born in 2011, and her permanent studio location was developed in 2013. We join with Louise in celebrating a large expansion that she is opening in September of 2017![/vc_column_text][vc_separator][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_video link=”https://vimeo.com/226475036″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]TC: Why did you first open your studio business?

LM: I have always been passionate about sharing my love of music with others. I know the positive impact music teachers had on my life as a child and youth, and I knew there was a need in the community and the timing felt right. I left my permanent teaching position as a public school music teacher and took a leap of faith, and I have never looked back.

TC: What’s something new and exciting that’s happening with your business, or a goal you have set for your business?

LM: Our studio is going through a massive growth year. We have just taken on 2000 extra square feet in our current commercial location. We will be offering more classes and lessons than ever before, and growing our incredible team. Everything is slated to be up and running in September, so we’ve got a very busy summer ahead of us!

TC: You are active not only in your own local community, but also in the Kindermusik educator community as well.  Tell us a little about your involvement in both.

LM: I am currently sitting on the PKE Board (new name to be announced at conference!), I Lead the Children’s Liturgy program at my church, I volunteer at school when I can.

TC: If you could share one tip with a new Kindermusik educator, what would it be?

LM: Be Yourself! Know from the beginning WHY you are teaching Kindermusik, and then share that passion. Make every class a memorable one. Prep, prep, prep – it makes you the BEST educator!

TC: Without a doubt, you have taken your own advice to heart![/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Educator Spotlight[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]TC: This is always such a fun question to ask since we Kindermusik educators have 1000 (or more!) songs in our heads.  What’s your favorite Kindermusik song to sing?

LM: My all-time favorite is Butterfly Wings. Right now at home, it’s the Hello-Lah song since my two-year old is obsessed with it.

TC: So now I have to know this, too.  What is your favorite Kindermusik dance to lead?!

LM: Definitely Sail Away and Mama Paquita!

TC: What do you love most about being a Kindermusik educator?

LM: That my cheeks get sore from smiling when I am teaching.  There is so much joy in every single class. I am so blessed to do what I do.

TC: If you had to name just one secret to your success in the Kindermusik classroom, what would it be?

LM: I find that when I am the best prepared for teaching the class, when my lesson plan is ready and my props are organized, then the magic can happen because I can be truly present with the children and the families. We can enjoy the time together playing, dancing and singing.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]TC: I learn so much when I ask this question, so I hope you don’t mind.  How do your Kindermusik or families describe you?

LM: Joyful, Special, Engaging, Personal, Caring, Amazing, Friendly, Loving.

TC: I couldn’t agree more!

TC: Describe some of the ways your experiences with your Kindermusik families have impacted you as an individual and a teacher.

LM: There have been many amazing families over the years that have impacted me as a teacher. I have received the most amazing cards and letters reminding me that what we are doing is making a difference in these families. I have seen families go through hard times, beautiful times, and I am blessed to be able to provide a place for them to have a musical outlet and community feeling.

TC: What do you feel has made your studio business such a success?

LM: I think my amazing team of educators and staff, and our dedication to putting the families first has made us a success. We are committed to valuing each student, to nurturing them as musicians and people, and igniting the passion of music in their bodies. We hear time and again that we are personal, caring and providing high quality music education to our community.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Educator Spotlight[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]TC: When you’re not at the studio, what are some of your hobbies?

LM: I love to go camping with my family and spend time at the beach. Our summer is short and we try to make the most of it. In the winter, I love playing ice hockey on a local women’s team (yes, typical Canadian!). Right now with three small children, that’s about all the time I get for hobbies, and that’s perfectly okay. My husband V.J. and I are enjoying watching our children Cormac 8, Breton 5 and Flora 2 grow into sweet people. It is a beautiful life.

TC: What is your favorite inspirational quote?

LM: I’m not sure it’s very inspirational, but it certainly has kept me grounded for many years now.  “Worries are like bedcrumbs – the more you wiggle, the more they scratch.”

TC: What’s something about being in the Kindermusik classroom that’s especially touching for you as a Kindermusik teacher?

LM: The most touching for me is every time a baby takes their first steps at Kindermusik class. I absolutely LOVE watching the parent experience that moment for the first time, and the celebration from the class that then happens. It never gets old. Being a part of the milestones that occur each week – from a child rolling over to a child learning how to play a tune on the glockenspiel. The learning that goes on fills my soul.[/vc_column_text][vc_separator][vc_column_text]Shared by Theresa Case who has an award-winning Kindermusik program at Piano Central Studios in Greenville, South Carolina.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Educator Conference Recap

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Stay tuned for a conference recap by our own Niki Dominguez, Director of Global Marketing![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Educator Spotlight: Nancy Aasland

Nancy Aasland

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Once you get to know Nancy a bit and see her beautiful heart for music, children, and families, it’s no surprise to learn that Kindermusik Discovery is the top Kindermusik program in all of Canada.  Nancy’s thoughtful and careful commitment to making a difference in the lives, minds, and hearts of children and families began in 1998 when Nancy herself first fell in love with Kindermusik.  Serving families in multiple locations in the Winnepeg, Kindermusik Discovery has become “the” place for a delightful and top-notch Kindermusik experience for local families.


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Nancy Aasland makes musical memories with her families at Winnepeg's Kindermusik Discovery.
Nancy Aasland makes musical memories with her families at Winnepeg’s Kindermusik Discovery.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]TC: What led you to first open Kindermusik Discovery back in 1998?

NA: I had been working in child care for several years, and though I loved that, I was looking for a way to bring my love for children and my love for music together. Especially since I had a new baby of my own. I researched numerous different music programs before choosing Kindermusik. The choice was easy, really, because of Kindermusik’s philosophy of allowing each child’s natural learning style to unfold, rather than driving very young children toward performance goals.  This allows us to nurture creativity and joy, and who could ask for a better experience than that?!!

TC: What’s your favorite Kindermusik song to sing?

NA: I LOVE to sing, and my personal favourites are the slow and pretty ones.  You Are My Sunshine, Tell Me Why the Stars Do Shine, Sweetest Little Baby… There’s probably one in every unit!!

TC: What’s your favorite Kindermusik dance to lead?

NA: I get a real “kick” out of Tants Tants Yidelekh from the Village Dream Pillow unit.

TC: Any teacher or parent who’s danced that dance knows exactly what you mean!!

 

TC: What do you love most about being a Kindermusik educator?

NA: I think it would have to be hearing the children sing, whether it’s a 6-year-old making up their own verse to An Austrian Went Yodeling, or a 2-year-old joining in on Fiddle Dee Dee.  And then there are those moments when a tiny baby is clearly adding her own voice to our song![/vc_column_text][vc_video link=”https://vimeo.com/222252359″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]TC: How do your Kindermusik kids (or families) describe you?

NA: I’ve been called “Mary Poppins” more than once!

 

TC: If you had to name just one secret to success in the Kindermusik classroom, what would it be?

A deep respect for each child and adult as a unique individual; to encourage and celebrate each one’s own natural learning style.  

TC: You’ve recently been named the top Kindermusik program in Canada.  Congratulations!  How are you feeling about that?

NA: I am delighted that my team and I have been honoured as the #1 Kindermusik program in Canada.  Our hearts are bursting that we continue to be loved and trusted by so many families in our community, and we will continue to do our best to bring them an awesome musical experience.

TC: What is one thing that has impacted you as a Kindermusik educator?

NA: The thing that has impacted my journey as an educator the most has been my own experiences of parenthood.  The insatiable curiosity I felt about what was going on in my child’s miraculous little brain.  The deep desire to share with her moments of incredible beauty through the arts.  And my hope that creativity would be the best trait I could nurture in her from the start, that would be valuable to her personally and professionally, no matter where life might take her.  The things I desperately want for my own child are the things I want for every child who comes through our doors.

TC: What is so meaningful to you about using Kindermusik to bring music into young minds and hearts?

NA: Music is one of the first things we respond to as infants, and one of the last things we cling to in our later years. There is no other human pastime with such lasting impact.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]