Have you ever noticed a building construction site that looks like not much is happening for a really long time and then all of the sudden a building is there? That’s because there are a lot of steps in putting in the foundation that take time but aren’t noticeable. However, the foundation is a very critical part of the long-term stability of the building. The work we do here at Harmony Arts through the Musikgarten curriculum is the foundation of your child’s musical building. It takes time and makes a significant difference in the long-term result of your child’s love of music.
Think about your ability to speak and read the English language. When you look at the words in this article you don’t have to name all the letters of the alphabet. You don’t have to sound out every word. You can probably hear the words in your head without saying them out loud. And if I were to add a variety of punctuation such as “!” or “?” and you were reading the words out loud, your voice would naturally change to inflect the excitement or question. The Musikgarten method is developing this same ability for your child in regard to music.
By learning the sounds of the patterns, what they look like and playing the card games, your child can read what the music says without naming all the notes and slowly finding every key on the keyboard. They can just read it and even hear it before it’s played—they just know it. They can even see when the patterns repeat or when a pattern moves to a different hand or octave. All of the drumming and dancing and listening is allowing your child to map the experience and music on their body. They can feel the rhythms they see in the music. They can experience the feel of a prowling cat or a scampering mouse, an excited kangaroo or a graceful swan in their body, which they will then be able to naturally express as they play the piano.
Sometimes it's hard for us to be patient through all the beginning years of keyboard and private lessons. Sometimes we don’t see the reading progress we may have expected. And we may even become anxious about the time/years it’s taking! Trust us and give us the time. We’ve seen this happen hundreds of times over the years. During the years of Musikgarten and Keyboard we are laying the foundation for a life-long love of music. Once that foundation is laid, we continue on at the student’s pace with the student’s goals in mind. We know that without force and according to when the student is ready, their musical abilities will connect with everything they musically feel inside. When this connection happens, the student takes off loving and creating music!
Be calm, be at peace, love your child, and just enjoy the musical journey. And know that if you do, you will get a child who beautifully creates, loves and enjoys music to the core—for life.