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Making Beautiful Music

Grace
Photo: Meryl's Music and Arts Centers

Yesterday I was getting the kids out of the car when my neighbor came strolling along with her 18-month-old. We exchanged pleasantries and chatted about this and that, and she told me that she had just started attending Music Together classes with her daughter. She asked if I had heard of it. "Heard of it?" I answered. "We did four semesters! With the same instructor!"

She was amazed that I was the one who'd attended classes with Grace. Why? Read on.

If you're unfamiliar, Music Together is a national chain of baby-and-parent music and movement classes that, I've got to say, are pretty great. As you may know, I was a musician in my former life, and was introduced to music at a very, very early age. So, I wanted to do the same for my kids. When you sign up for a Music Together class, you and a number of other parents and little ones (classes are kept pretty small) are given a CD of music to listen to for the semester, plus sheet music, and some informative literature.

You're expected to listen to the music — together — and get to know the songs. Then, once a week, you all get together with the instructor and sing, dance around, play instruments, and so on. It's all very structured, well planned, and even fun. Grace loved it, as did the other kids. Now, why was my neighbor amazed that I attended these classes for two years?

Grace and Dave
Photo: Meryl's Music and Art Centers

Imagine yours truly, Grace, and about eight or nine other women and their kids, all of us holding nylon scarves above our heads, skipping (yes, skipping) in a circle and singing aloud. Or doing little fingerplays. Or enduring the special type of hell that is "free dance."

But setting aside my own personal humiliation, Grace loved the experience and really got something beneficial out of it (I SWEAR to this day that she can keep time). The Music Together classes are very well done, and worth the money. I heartily recommend them.

Just be prepared to leave your manhood at the door.

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