Through this program you are invited to re-enter the magical world of childhood!
Music and movement address all facets of human development.
All aspects of learning are enhanced when music is a key element in a holistic approach. Music and movement
are a natural part of life, especially for children. Movement should be part of all experiences for children, for it
is their natural mode of being and expression. Moving to music and simple rhythmic songs comes naturally to
young children; it both energizes them and helps integrate sensory-motor experiences.
Music and movement can:
• develop balance, control, and coordination through activities that are fun and challenging
• help children explore abstract concepts at an experiential level of understanding for deep learning
• develop self-awareness
• emphasize give-and-take social interaction through play/dance
• express activities and feelings of everyday life in mime and drama
• raise the level of consciousness of how to move, where to move, and how parts of the body feel while in action
This kinesthetic awareness is an inner sense, an awareness of how the body feels as it moves, and particularly
how muscles and joints feel when tensed or relaxed. It is an important way of taking in information and
remembering it when it is patterned in the body. These very same movement activities give the child a foundation of musical experience: beat, meter, phrase,
form – and a beloved repertoire of songs and games.
Musically, early childhood is a time of preparation, especially vocally and rhythmically. Establishing body
control, grace and flow of movement, beat competency and nurturing the singing voice are priorities. Children
need to have experiences without expectation or judgment: affirmation of their efforts will support their
The Musikgarten curriculum features a rich collection of songs and chants. Most of the songs in the collection are
folksongs and seek to introduce a new generation to the roots of our musical heritage. The songs selected come
from numerous countries and share the histories of many cultures. Activities in general are simple and short, but
not simply entertaining.
The early years are rich in vocal development, both speaking and singing. The cadences, rhythms, and melodies
of the languages spoken in the environment pose no difficulty for the young child, since the ear is tuned with
great sensitivity to these aspects. The acuity of audition at this period of life will not be available again after it
has passed. A critical period for the formation of the language of the environment peaks at around two years, but
continues to be a focal point in the child’s life as it elaborates into formal language to age six. The experiences of
the sensory-motor explorer spur language development, since the children need to communicate their perceptions