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Friday, September 28, 2012

Product Review: Music Together


Music Together is a worldwide program designed expose young children, up to seven years of age, about music and movement. Based on the belief that all children are musical, Music Together can teach young children to sing in tune, keep a beat, and learn about music of their culture.  Music Together classes are offered all over the United States and in many locations worldwide.

For the family in which Music Together classes are not an option, Music Together offers many products that can be used in the home. The on-line store offers several musical instruments, CD sets, song collections, Teaching Guides, and Gift Certificates. They even have a 'Give the Gift of Music' section on their website that includes ideas such as: Gifts for under $12.00, and Gifts for Preschoolers. I especially loved the Lollipop Drum.

I was fortunate enough to receive the Music Together Family Favorites Songbook for Teachers and the Music Together Family Favorites CD. The instructor manual can be purchased for $29.95, and the CD is $14.95. You can purchase both together and save $5.00. These products are designed for anyone who works musically with children; but you don't have to be musical to teach with these products. Those who know me well know about my painfully obvious lack of musical ability.
Despite my lack of musical knowledge, we are a very musical family. We sing together, dance together, and five of the seven people in this house play at least one instrument. It was exciting to receive a musical program just for the littles. The instruction manual was very thorough and a bit overwhelming for someone with such a keen lack of musical ability. But after we started using the program I realized that all the claims on the website about young children being naturally musical are true. Using the instruction manual as a guide, I felt that the program really taught itself.
Margaret dancing to the music. Malcolm is doing his usual 'stare at the CD player' while he gets a feel for the sounds.
The problem I have with many children's music program is that the songs they sing and the music they play is just so... stupid. I can never understand how companies think that just because children are young, their music has to be all silly and dumb. That is not how it is with Music Together. The songs are catchy and the lyrics are good. I even found myself humming a tune when I was alone in the car. Alone. With no children in sight.  Even Michael, who has very defined musical tastes, agreed that these songs offered benefit for musical growth. If you know Michael and that doesn't get you interested in this program then nothing will. You can check out some samples of the songs on the CD here. But have your credit card ready, because you'll probably need it.

The lessons in the teacher book are laid out very clearly and are easy to follow. Track numbers and materials needed are right there so you don't have that panic-moment where you realize you need a bunch of things you didn't get ready. With young kids that moment often spells meltdown. I loved how the lessons were divided up into age-categories, offering different suggestions for different ages and abilities. Since a majority of homeschooling families are teaching within this dynamic, it made the program even more perfect for homeschoolers.
Now Malcolm's getting into it. I love the little bopping up and down that he does as he dances.
Now it's important to recognize that doing the program at home is not going to match the level and fullness of enrolling your child in a Music Together class. I am not trying to say that buying the book can completely replace the classroom experience. The classroom teachers are specifically trained for this instruction, and that is something that is impossible to duplicate at home. You can, however, give your child a wonderful experience and exposure to the course, and also give yourself a nice little self-confidence boost that lets you know that you can teach your child about music.


Oh! When can that work be in my boxes again? I can do the prettiest dancing when we do my music school work.

"Ah-Da!" Translation: Where is my milk bottle?
As a bonus to my readers, you can enter the coupon code: SCHOOLHOUSE at check-out and save an additional $2.00 off your order. Many other members of The Schoolhouse Review Crew reviewed Music Together. You can read their reviews HERE or by clicking the banner below.
Disclaimer: As a member of The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew, I received products from Music Together free of charge in exchange for an honest review on this blog. I received no other compensation.

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