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Dr Anita Collins, from Melbourne University, in her inspirational TED talk, confirms through her research that music is the one activity known to vastly improve your child's cognitive ability. Helping to develop the mastery of languages, create memory systems, help with complex problem solving and positively affect emotional skills, music has been found to be beneficial at any time of life, but most beneficial before the age of 7.
With this in mind, at Music Works Magic we believe that music education is the quintessential cornerstone for successful life-long learning. We base our teaching on the philosophies of Zoltan Kodaly, Dr Edwin Gordon, Dr Beth Bolton, Dr John Feierabend, Dr Sinichi Suzuki and Carl Orff. According to Kodaly our first instrument is our voice, and at Music Works Magic we take onboard the African proverb: If you can talk, you can sing, if you can walk, you can dance! Together we create the space and time for all to develop the self confidence to make music together.
With an understanding that the voice is our first instrument, we believe that the skill of singing in tune enables effective listening and the ability to recall the sounds that you hear. Good musicians always sing.
Orff agreed that it is so important to learn to play instruments, and all types of instruments, but that we all need to sing tunefully, experience the beat and rhythmic elements in many ways through our bodies. Feierabend says we must work to develop tuneful, 'beatful' and artful students.
Immersion in music begins before your children are even born. We don’t wait until they are 'old enough' before we start talking to them, so why do we defer singing with them? Babies are known to have musical memory from as young as 22 weeks in-utero. Gordon acknowledged that even the youngest babies can sing and vocally respond without words. At Music Works Magic you can enjoy the wonderful musical journey together with your child whilst being part of a community that sings and moves together, interacting through music.
Our teachers work from our home studio base or out at your centre.
Anna Mlynek-Kalman M. Mus., B. Ed., Dip Teach. created Music Works Magic upon completion of her Masters Degree with a Kodaly emphasis in the United States in 1996, recognising the need for music programs that begin with parents and neonates and offering ongoing music services throughout life. Anna has taught and directed music programs with children from K-year 12 for over 30 years at many schools both here in Australia and abroad, and tutored aural musicianship at Melbourne University for five years. During this time she has presented lectures, papers and workshops at universities, schools and preschools to both staff and students.
She is currently enrolled in the PhD. program at Monash University, working with Early Childhood Educators, researching the effect of early childhood musical experiences and creating effective mentorship programs.
Anna runs training courses specifically for adults wishing to gain confidence when working with babies-8yr olds, and runs the Kodaly preschool teacher training course. She has produced 5 CDs and accompanying Teachers’ Manuals; There’s A Rainbow In My Garden, Swing It Possum, All By Myself, and On Safari, containing Jungle Jive and Conga Line. She is donating all proceeds from the CDs to the Learning for Life Autism Centre and Ausimed - Breast Cancer Research Project.
She and her staff are passionate about high quality music education and they create programs that offer a sound developmental, and educational base for children from before birth.
Over the years, our Director, Anna, has built a team of like-minded music teachers who are creative in their approach, highly qualified and experienced, but who never compromise on the educational value that they aim to provide.
At Music Works Magic, our class teachers are extensively trained and vastly experienced. We meet regularly for professional development and attend conferences locally as well as nationally and internationally, always discovering fresh, new, and interesting ways to present our material. We love what we do and you will too! This year we are celebrating 20 years of music making excellence.
We also have a team of highly qualified instrumental teachers, who teach individual or small group lessons to both children and adults. We offer both Traditional Method, Coloured Strings Method and Suzuki Method on a range of instruments.
Recordings can be fun to listen to but in a music class it is vital that the teacher can be a good model for the children. The children need to hear their teacher sing and hear their own voices. The teacher must be able to guide young children through a range of activities that include warming up, vocalising and exploring the range of the voice. Our children are encouraged to listen to their take home CD's throughout the week to support the in class learning and to help them sing more accurately.
Our teachers help children explore their voices with lots of vocalisation activities and solo singing opportunities. This helps children become comfortable with their voices.
If adults sing in an adult friendly pitch, down low, this is not going to serve your child best. In order to best engage the side of the brain that engages when we sing, we must sing in higher pitches. Children do this very naturally given a good model. They need opportunity to explore the full range of the voice. The best programs have the teacher singing up high and exploring the whole range of the voice not just the lowest notes we can produce. Singing low generally engages the language receptive side of the brain. The children do not hear the tune and focus on the words alone. This will serve to turn your toddlers into droners. They will confuse their singing and talking voices.
Our program includes a range of traditional children’s songs as well as songs specifically written for children.
creative, non-prescribed and folk dances.
Our program provides the opportunity to develop a strong sense of beat from birth and to develop rhythmic skills for older children.
Good listeners become good learners and with the right experiences good musicians.
This is a process where we hear the sounds in our heads. this process ensures that the children hear the sounds they will produce in their heads before sounding them out. This helps to develop greater accuracy in singing.
If making more and more noise is the sole purpose of the instruments then one would have to ask what’s the point?
At Music Works Magic we want the children to use their listening and audiation skills to play the instruments with greater awareness of sound produced, sensitivity and accuracy.
It’s important to remember that each child learns differently at a different pace. Many children need to explore a room and feel comfortable and familiar in a space and with a group and repertoire of songs before they will interact and participate.