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#924984 - 03/05/08 03:37 PM Early Childhood programs  
Joined: Apr 2007
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Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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Boynton Beach, FL
I have been teaching Kindermusik at the local music conservatory for about 2 years now, and for several reasons, the director has asked me to consider doing other early childhood programs. I want to stress that is it not due to the curricula in Kindermusik, but rather the expenses that are passed onto to their educators which therefore forces us to have prices that are pricing us out of the market in this town.

At any rate, I told him I would look into other programs, such as Music for Young Children, Yamaha, or Harmony Road. Does anyone know anything about these programs compared with Kindermusik, or have any other suggestions I should look at?

private piano/voice teacher FT

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#924985 - 03/06/08 08:20 AM Re: Early Childhood programs  
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Dramaqueen Offline
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I have just started teaching Kindermusik and am planning to teach Music for Young Children this coming fall.

I have discussed both programs with my teacher and she has raised some interesting points.

MYC is a piano program. Each child works on a piano/keyboard at the lesson (except for the 3 year old program). The parent/adult is suppose to come with to the lesson and they are part of each lesson.

MYC biggest concern is that if you don't teach it well, or are not really observant it is easy for the children to not learn how to read notes on the staff. This was my teacher's biggest concern. She has had children that have come out of MYC not knowing how to read music. If you follow the program till age 7 (i think that's the age) Once you are done the child is suppose to be in RCM grade 2.

My other thing to be aware of is that since all children learn at different rates you really need to be aware if a child is not getting something, or if a child is bored because they are ready for something new but the class doesn't move on yet. (but then again I have that concern with school as well smile )

On the other hand MYC is a wonderful program for teaching piano in a group setting for those that want early childhood lessons. I have a lot of families waiting for me to get my training so that I can teach this program because I do not teach children under 5 in private lessons. These families are not interested in Kindermusik, which is more about music appreciation than learning piano.

I do not know about the other programs.

Currently preparing for Grade 9 RCM
New private piano teacher
Kindermusik Educator
Just bought: Kawai GM-10k
#924986 - 03/06/08 08:46 AM Re: Early Childhood programs  
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Kreisler Offline
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Joined: Nov 2002
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Iowa City, IA
They're all pretty much the same, and all of them pass expenses along, whether in the cost of training or materials.

Consider looking into Kodaly certification. The training would cost about the same, but after that, there's no overhead. All you really need is a white board, construction paper, and markers.

"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

#924987 - 03/06/08 09:01 AM Re: Early Childhood programs  
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Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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Well, another option is that I create my own with what I've learned over the years. I'm not adverse to that except I don't have the time. But perhaps you're right, Kreisler, I'm sure they are all structured in a way that they pass the cost on to the individual teachers. The problem with Kindermusik is that they have these wonderful At Home Materials which the kids love, but they are expensive and thus drive up the costs. I personally took a pay cut in Kindermusik this year in the hopes that it would encourage more students to enroll, and it really didn't do a thing.

I think I would really enjoy doing a piano class like MYC, but since we have Suzuiki piano teachers at the school, I wonder if that might be a conflict.

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#924988 - 03/06/08 11:30 AM Re: Early Childhood programs  
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dumdumdiddle Offline
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I've taught Harmony Road for about 10 years now and love it. I was originally a Yamaha teacher back in the early 80's, right around the time when Yamaha USA changed from a 'letter name' system to the 'solfege' system associated with the original program in Japan. Many teachers left Yamaha, some started their own programs (like MYC). Another major curriculum change in the early 90's caused several more teachers to leave. One was Jan Keyser, who founded the Harmony Road program.

When you talk about early childhood programs you have to differentiate between 'general' music programs (like KM, Music Together, Musikgarten) and 'piano-based' programs (Yamaha, Harmony Road, MYC). I chose a piano-based program because I am a piano teacher/musician and I wanted the early childhood program I taught to lead and prepare kids for piano. I chose Harmony Road because I am totally sold on solfege as a way for young children to internalize pitch and build great ear training. By the way, MYC also incorporates moveable 'do' solfege, but their main musical language is letter names.

The 3 programs are very similar in structure and in activities. The classroom studio consists of 8-10 keyboards or digitals, a teacher piano/digital, rhythm instruments, magnetic note board, etc....

With Yamaha you have to pay monthly royalties (at least the last I heard). With Harmony Road there are no royalties. Training is done by Jan Keyser, author of the program in a small group setting of maybe 10 teachers. Cost for training is about $300. The curriculum is purchased through HR, but it is very reasonable and I mark it up, include my shipping costs, and parents still come out not having to pay an arm and a leg.

Any piano-based program should not conflict with Suzuki, since Suzuki is not group but private or duet lessons. Although they share the ear training emphasis, they are completely different programs.

Check out the following websites for more info:




Music School Owner
Early Childhood Music Teacher/Group Piano Teacher/Private Piano Teacher
Member of MTAC and Guild

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