When the pandemic hit in the spring and I had to pivot to online teaching, I was alarmed to notice the dearth of music education opportunities for very young children. By June, my husband and I started to put together a video series using a well-known curriculum, First Steps in Music, for the purpose of sharing musical experiences with young children to to help them become “tuneful, beautiful, and artful.” That is - to acquire pitch competency, beat competency, and sensitivity to musical expression. We learned a lot while creating the 8 videos of Summer Fun. We are now almost ready to release the next set, Autumn Colors.
We also created a separate 20-minute sample lesson that allows an inquirer to assess the program in two ways. Informational slides explain each step of the curriculum, and the lesson can be used immediately with children, to try out the process. If any of you are interested in music education theory and brain research, leave your email address at ruthpurcell.com/join to receive regular informational updates, and also to view the sample video. This is a link that can be shared with anyone you know who would like to receive more information, or to use the course with a child or grandchild.
If you would like to watch the sample video yourself but would rather not be on the email list to sign up for free information, go to this page.
This process is challenging and fulfilling for me as a musician and as a music educator. The flexibility of the curriculum allows me to communicate to the children my joy in making music, and my belief that making music is as natural as drawing breath. I expect them to have enjoyment and success in becoming musical, at a critical time in their learning lives, in order to grow into musical and artistically sensitive adults. This also keeps me on my toes as a performer, week by week!
We are still at the beginning stages of this endeavor. We would love to get feedback, musical, pedagogical, or technical!