Then & Now: Alice and Heidi
I started taking my girls, Alice and Heidi to Leading Note classes nearly 18 months ago. Alice was 2 ½ years old, and Heidi was just 6 ½ months old. Looking back, it is absolutely incredible to see how far these little people have come in such a short time, not just in musical skills, but in many different areas.
Alice’s first classes were a little bit intense! She is the kind of child people often use words like ‘spirited,’ and ‘enthusiastic’ to describe! She was so eager to participate in all the activities she could barely sit down! So the first few weeks of classes gave her plenty of opportunity to work on patiently waiting her turn and settling in to the rhythm of the classes. It is amazing how quickly she relaxed into this routine, and it has been very helpful for her to work on these skills at a young age.
Since we began our classes she has really looked forward to her class each week (with a few exceptions as is to be expected with a 3 year old!). She loves seeing her lovely teacher and classmates and really enjoys all the activities. Because of the calm and settled environment in the classes, she has been able to focus on her work and build on many skills week to week.
She has been working on:
- keeping a steady beat,
- playing rhythms and rhymes, creating rhythms from words (she often turns her breakfasts into rhythms at home!),
- identifying and demonstrating dynamics and tempo changes,
- identifying different types of instruments in music,
- fine and gross motor skills,
- singing skills,
- inner hearing,
- turn taking,
- practicing her manners and
- treating people and things in our environment with respect.
There are so many more things I could list – these classes have so much value! She has also learnt hundreds of songs and rhymes (and is often heard singing at any given time!).
Heidi’s musical journey began a bit differently. For many months, she slept straight through music class strapped on to my chest like a little possum! As she grew older, she would sit in my lap and watch as the older children took their turns. Soon enough though, she was joining in with all the other students! She would hear Sophie call her name and toddle over to collect her instrument or prop, and even attempt to say ‘ta’ in appreciation! There were so many occasions throughout the week when we would see or hear little Heidi attempting to sing the ‘Hello song’ (in-tune, might I add!) or sing a song and attempt the actions she saw in class.
So much of her learning was observational and completely pressure-free, and she learnt to sing in tune well before she learnt to talk! One of her first songs was the Moon, Moon song (from the beautiful book we sing in class) at 14 months old. It became obvious that she was taking in so much more than we realised at the time. More recently, she has finally plucked up the courage and confidence to actually sing hello and goodbye to Sophie in music class, which was a huge moment of celebration!
Now, Heidi is now 21 months old and Alice is 3 ¾. They are both participating fully in the classes and enjoy running their own classes at home! We are so thankful to Sophie for this beautiful program she has created. Both of our children have really flourished under her guidance and gentle encouragement. They absolutely love music and our house is full of singing, which we absolutely adore. We are excited to continue our musical journey and keep music a big and beautiful part of our lives. Thank you Sophie!
– Abby Calic
(Abby is mum to Alice and Heidi, and also a Teacher/Admin Superwoman in the Leading Note team)
Interested in trying an online music class? Click here to book one of our flexible options, ranging from a Pioneers Express class for $10 to a full term enrolment.