Saturday, March 21, 2009


First attend Musikgarten

Then go for violin or piano lessons

A popular children Music & Movement Programme from U.S.A. - for Babies, Toddlers and Children up-to 9 years old. Based on over 30 years of research & practice. Builds a strong foundation for the children before they learn to play any musical instrument.

a) Family Music for Babies - 30 minutes per week
(Expecting mummy, newborn - 16 months)

Play musically with your baby through bouncing and rocking music songs, wiggle and peek-a-boo games, dancing, moving and singing. Music play activities are designed to increase your child’s curiosity about music, to develop listening skills and a sense of beat, and to establish the foundation for singing and musical thought.

b) Family Music for Toddlers
(16 months - Age 4
) - 30 minutes per week

Participate with your toddlers in singing, chanting, moving, dancing, listening and playing simple instruments – while developing a strong musical bond with your child. Through activities that bridge the natural connection between music and movement, your child’s musical aptitude and listening abilities are enhanced and further developed.

c) Cycles of Seasons
(Age 4 – Age 6) - 45 minutes per week

Celebrate your child’s love of nature and growing independence through activities. Classes are designed to build attention, self-expression and include singing, chanting, moving, focused listening, musical games, exploring musical instruments, creative movement and story telling.

d) Music Makers At the Key Board
(Age 6 & above) - 1 hour per week

Musikgarten children come to the piano ready to play the songs they have learned to sing, dance and love. Small group lessons at the keyboard capitalize on your child’s delight in making music with others and allow the children to gallop through the beginning keyboard levels with delight.

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Thursday, March 19, 2009

What is Musikgarten?

1) Video clip by

  • Lorna Lutz Heyge, PH.D., Founder of Musikgarten
  • Jill Citro Hannagan, Founder/Director Hockessin Music School
  • Dr. Dee Joy Coulter, Educational Neuroscience Specialist

2) Our Founders

Dr. Lorna Heyge (Chairman and Founder)

  • Founded Musikgarten/Music Matters in 1993/1994.
  • Author of numerous books including Kindermusik for the Young Child and Kindermusik Beginnings (used from 1974 - 1993).
  • President of the Foundation for Music-Based Learning.
  • Publisher of Early Childhood Connections.

Audrey Silick (Co-Author)

  • Co-author of Kindermusik for the Young Child.
  • National Speaker and leader for music educators, Montessori educators and the Earth Education movement.
  • Founder and Director Emeritus of the Toronto Montessori Teacher Training Institute.

3) Founded in 1994.

4) Based on over 30 years of applied research in early childhood education and early childhood music education.

5) Age appropriate learning.

6) Holistic child-centred approach.

7) Pre-instrumental music and movement program.

  • Builds a strong musical foundation that is essential before learning any instrument.
  • Develops good aural skills (help in their aural tests – in their music examinations – ABRSM, TRINITY, etc ).
  • Develops a good sense of rhythm and pitch.
  • Develops a good understanding of how to express & play music with feeling.
  • Exposure to composers & music of different periods (classical and contemporary).
  • Prepares a child well so that s/he can achieve success easily. Therefore will enjoy music lessons. Love & interest in learning an instrument will sustain (children will practice on their own).

Upon Completing Musikgarten, the children would have:

  • Developed good aural skills (well prepared for Aural Tests in music exams).
  • Developed Sight-reading & Sight-singing skills.
  • Learnt how to do simple Composition, Transposition, Improvisation & Dictation.
  • Learnt about Harmony, Chord Progression & Forms in Music, Composers & Music of different periods.
  • Acquired the proper keyboard / piano skills.


Why Choose Musikgarten?

Today, most parents like their children to learn music from a very young age and they have high expectations when they send the children for music lessons. Many wish their child to be another “Mozart” which is not unreasonable. But the sad truth is that not all children are gifted. Statistics reveal that 8 out of every 10 young children who are sent to learn piano drop out after taking lessons for 6 months.

The reasons cited are:

(a) the children do not enjoy the music classes after the initial fad is over
(b) too much pressure on them to perform.

So much so, they end up hating music for their rest of their lives. How tragic and sad for both the parent and the children! The question then is what is the right approach to teach music to very young children. Can the children be nurtured so that the love for music is instilled whilst at the same time building an essential foundation so that they can readily take up piano or violin lessons later on?There are a number of early childhood music programmes available for young children. So, what makes Musikgarten so special? A number of critical factors make Musikgarten truly outstanding in comparison with the others.

The Founders
Musikgarten was founded in 1994 by Dr Lorna Heyge and Audrey Sillick both of whom are internationally renowned specialists and innovators in the field of early childhood music education. In designing the Musikgarten program, they have incorporated the teachings of great thinkers / practitioners in early childhood education and early childhood music education namely Dalcroze, Laban, Kodaly, Suzuki, Orff and Montessori. In addition, they have drawn from the latest research findings in language development, motor competence, brain development, learning theory, music memory, audiation, ethnomusicology, stages of play and parent-child bonding.

Holistic Child-Centred Approach

A sound music program for young children must nurture every aspect of the child’s being. It must be designed around the principle of holistic, individual experience. Then only can it be considered as truly educational and not just an expensive child entertainment program. Children achieve developmentally appropriate outcomes, not by practising the skills in isolation but by actively engaging in activities designed to develop competency through the doing/learning process. Young children’s play is their work and they learn through doing.
Musikgarten teaches music to young children experientially, through activities based on the developmentally appropriate, holistic child-centred approach. As such, it is not focused on making children achieve performance outcomes. Put simply, it is designed to allow children to acquire musicality at their own pace, encouraging involvement, not expecting or insisting that the child acquire certain skills or develop certain behaviour within a given time frame.

Proven Method of Teaching

In Musikgarten classes, children are not expected to perform on demand. Rather, they are gently encouraged to participate at their own pace and at their own level of development. This approach ensures that the music lesson is a very enjoyable experience and that their participation is not hampered by performance anxiety. Therefore, children in a Musikgarten Class are not afraid to join in even if they know that they have not fully mastered an activity. Because of this methodology, the children expect to be successful just by being involved while still enjoying challenge of mastery. Success fosters self-confidence, persistence, the will to try again after failure as well as courage and initiative.

Music is the Primary Focus

The aim of Musikgarten is to develop the skills, abilities, and talents necessary for a child to be physically and mentally ready before taking up an instrument. Music activities are designed to foster development of the whole child – body, mind and spirit. Family materials reinforces learning in the home environment. At every level, the emphasis of the program is on music and being musical – singing, dancing, listening and moving to music, learning tonal and rhythm patterns and using simple instruments such as rhythm sticks and scarfs.
The program does not require the parents to spend large sums of money on buying instruments, toys and books. Nor are parents required to engage in large-scale projects such as making things at home to being to music class. Instead, Family Materials provide lots of suggested ways in which parents can spend their precious time with their children, singing, playing games and generally interacting through shared musical experiences. In short, Musikgarten leads the children to “Musical Literacy” which means they can "see what they hear and hear what they see”.


Music Notation and Keyboard Instruction

For the older children (6 to 8 years old), Musikgarten seamlessly integrates music notation and keyboard instruction with the other components of its music program. Children up to age 8 continue to learn music through singing, dancing, listening, moving, reading/writing, playing and composing. For these children, using notation is simply an extension of their natural musicality. All the time spent in the of music class in earlier years has prepared the children to progress naturally and easily into these new areas of musical expression. The confidence and joy with which they read, write, compose, play and even practise, is a testimony to Musikgarten’s unique approach to the integration of music notation and keyboard instruction.

Quality of Musikgarten Teachers and Teaching Materials

In Malaysia, Musikgarten is offered as a licensed program and aspiring music teachers must meet stringent entry requirements before they are allowed to take up the training program. They have to attend training workshops where hands-on practice-teaching is a must and to re-attend training yearly in order to keep themselves updated on the latest research findings and developments in the Musikgarten syllabus.
Upon Obtaining Musikgarten certification, it is compulsory for the teacher to sign up for the Musikgarten Trademark License for her classes conducted in Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia or Brunei. All Musikgarten Workshops are approved by the Early Childhood Music and Movement Association in the U.S. (ECMMA). The ECMMA is an umbrella organization that recognizes training according to the qualifications of the instructor and the content of the course.
This high level of teacher expertise combined with the use of Musikgarten’s world class teaching materials ensure that the children attending Musikgarten classes are participating in the finest early childhood music program available today.

Musikgarten Trainer in Malaysia

Ms Jenny Ong
M. Education (Early Childhood Development & Music Education),
Lesley University, U.S.A.
Certified Musikgarten Teacher Trainer
Founding Director, Musikgarten Malaysia & Singapore

Musikgarten Malaysia is an institutional member of the following organisations:
National Association of Early Childhood Care and Education Malaysia (NAECCEM).
Association of Registered Childcare Providers Malaysia (PPBM),
Persatuan Tadika Malaysia (PTM)

A Cross-Cultural Music Program

Musikgarten was born out of the desire to nurture the natural musical ability of all children, to have them experience and maintain their rich cultural heritage, to foster creative musical expression in society. By developing and making available the highest quality curricula materials and musical instruments at reasonable prices, and by holding regular workshops to train teachers, Musikgarten has created a unique opportunity for parents to provide young children with an affordable comprehensive music education for the first eight years of their lives – a music education program that will prepare and equip them for a lifetime of loving, listening to, playing and sharing the joy of making music.
The songs, languages and cultures may be different but the way children grow and learn, the joys and benefits of shared musical experiences and the need for an early childhood music education program at affordable price are the same all over the world.

Questions Frequently asked by Parents (FAQ)

1 - What is MUSIKGARTEN?

  • MUSIKGARTEN is a children’s music programme from U.S.A.
  • For Babies, Toddlers and Children 6 years old & above
  • Written in 1994 by Dr Lorna and Dr Audrey. Dr Lorna is an early childhood music specialist while Dr Audrey is an early children education specialist who founded the TORONTO MONTESSORI Institute
  • Group Music Class – singing, chanting, beat development, vocal development, listening skills and ultimately playing music pieces at the Keyboard
  • Provides a conducive environment for children to enjoy making music together
  • Builds a strong foundation for the child before they take up individual piano or violin lessons later on
  • Based on over 30 years of research and practice

  • Enrolment is based on the age of the child:

    - Babies Class Birth to 16 months
    - Toddlers Class 16 months to 4 years old
    - Cycle Class 4 to 6 years old
    - Keyboard Class 6 years old and above

    Note: Refer to the MUSIKGARTEN colour brochure for the details of each class.

2 - What are the benefits of Musikgarten?

The children will:

  • Have a good sense of rhythm
  • Like to sing
  • Learn how to sing at the correct pitch
  • Good listening skills
  • Acquire Musical Literacy i.e. “see what they hear” and “hear what they see” (when they complete the final level in the Keyboard course)
  • Have better social skills i.e. open up and not be shy
  • Have better discipline
  • Have good bonding with the parents
  • Enjoy learning music and are willing to continue to learn until they complete the higher grades i.e. they will not stop after 9 months or hate music because of the unpleasant experience

3 - My Child is 6 months old. Which class can she join?

She can join the “Babies” class which is for parents with babies from birth up to 16 months old. In the class, the parents are guided on how to stimulate the left and right brain of the child through music as well as nurture the musical potential of their children.

4 - My child is 18 months old? Which class can she join? Must she attend the “Babies” class first?

She can join the “Toddlers” class which is for children aged 16 months to 4 years old. The mother or father must accompany the child in the class.
No, it is not necessary to attend the “Babies” class first.

5 - My child is 4 years old. Which class can she join? Must she attend the “Toddlers” class first?

She can join the “Cycles” class which is for children aged 4 to 6 years old.
The mother or father need NOT accompany the child.
No, it is not necessary to attend the “Toddlers” class first.

6 - My child is 3 years old. She is very smart and can do a lot of things. Can she join the “Cycles” class directly?

No, it is not advisable to join the “Cycles” class directly. She should join the “Toddlers” class first because she will not be able to participate fully in the activities in the “Cycles” class such as contribute to the discussions. To give a similar example: If a child is 4 years old, the kindergarten will not be able to accept him/her because the entry age is 5 years.

7 - My child is 6 years old. Which class can she join? Must she attend the “Cycle of Seasons” class first?

She can join the “Keyboard” class which is for children aged 6 years old & above. The mother or father need NOT accompany the child.
No, it is not necessary to attend the “Cycles” class first.

8 - What can my child do after completing the Musikgarten Keyboard Course?

Upon completing the final level in the Keyboard Course, the children would have:

  • Developed good aural skills (well prepared for Aural Tests in Music Examinations)
  • Developed sight-reading and sign-singing skills
  • Learnt how to do simple Compositions, transposition, Improvisation and Dictation
  • Identify the sounds of instruments used in the Orchestra
  • Learnt about Harmony, Chord Progression, Forms in Music, composers and Music of different periods
  • Acquired the proper keyboard / piano skills

9 - What is the difference between MUSIKGARTEN and other programmes such as KINDERMUSIK or JMC?


  • Children’s music programme from U.S.A.
  • Written by the same authors who wrote MUSIKGARTEN - Dr Lorna and Dr Audrey. They left KINDERMUSIK in 1994.
  • Similar in content but do not have the “KEYBOARD” course


  • Children’s music programme from YAMAHA, JAPAN
  • Performance oriented i.e. children are expected to play at the keyboard at very young age.

10 - How much are the MUSIKGARTEN fees?

Please refer to our Authorised Musikgarten Centre or the Teacher for details.

11- Is there a CD for the children to listen to the songs they have learnt in the class?
Yes, it is call the “FAMILY PACK” and it consists of a CD, Parent Book.

12 - How much does the Family Pack (CD and Parent Book) cost and how many months will it be good for?

Please refer to our Authorised Musikgarten Centre or the Teacher for details.

13 - Why should I get the Family Pack for my child?

MUSIKGARTEN’s philosophy is that children learn best through repetition and parental involvement. Therefore, the Family Packs are necessary for reinforcement of learning at home and also to continue the bonding / fun of music time together with the child at home.

14 - My child is 4 years old. I want to enroll her for individual piano lessons now? What is your opinion?

MUSIKGARTEN believes that children at this age should have a good musical foundation before taking up individual piano lessons. Otherwise they will lose interest very quickly and give up music lessons after 1 year or so. At the age of 4, the fingers and the body may not be strong enough for the piano. As such, improper finger positions and bad body posture may lead to habits that are difficult to undo later on.

Musical foundation means:

  • Able to feel the beat of the music
  • Have a good sense of rhythm
  • Have a good sense of pitch
  • Able to sing
  • Able to move expressively with the music
  • Able to feel whether the music is in major or minor key

With a strong musical foundation, the child will be able to play the piano properly and with feeling. At the same time she enjoys it because she understands what she is playing.

Yes, there are child musical prodigies like Mozart and others but they are one in a million.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

For more infomation: (Malaysia) (USA)