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Three Valentine Cupids

Fun Valentine’s Day Fingerplays for your Family

Five Little Hearts

Five little hearts, all in a row

The first one said, “I love you so.”

The second one said, “Will you be my Valentine?”

The third one said, “I will, if you’ll be mine.”

The fourth one said, “I’ll always be your friend.”

The fifth one said, “We’ll all be friends until the very end.”

How Many Valentines?

Valentines, valentines,

how many do you see?

Valentines, valentines:

One for Father, (hold up thumb)

One for Mother, (hold up pointer)

One for Grandma, (middle finger)

One for Sister, (ring finger)

One for Brother, (little finger)

And here is one for you!

(make heart shape with both thumbs and pointer fingers)

Do You Know the Little Love Bug?

(to be sung to “The Muffin Man”)

Do you know the little love bug,

the little love bug, the little love bug?

Do you know the little love bug

who comes on Valentine’s Day?

He comes to give a hug and kiss,

a hug and kiss, a hug and kiss.

He comes to give a hug and kiss

To (child’s name) on Valentine’s Day!

Wedding

For Mom and Dad’s Enjoyment

“When you fall in love, I think you’re supposed to get shot with an arrow or something, but the rest of it isn’t supposed to be so painful.” (Harlen, 8 )

“To get a girl to fall in love with you… take her out to eat. Make sure it’s something she likes to eat. French fries usually works for me.” (Bart, 9)

“Love is foolish…..but I might try it sometime.” (Floyd, 9 )

“Once I’m done with kindergarten, I’m going to find me a wife.” (Tom, 5)

“On the first date, most people tell each other lies, and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date.” Mike, 9

“Never kiss in front of other people. It’s embarrassing if anybody sees you. But if nobody sees you, I might be willing to try it with a handsome boy, but just for a few hours.” (Kelly, 9)

“It’s better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need somebody to clean up after them.” (Lynette, 9)

“Love and Marriage: It gives me a headache to think about that stuff. I’m just a kid. I don’t need that kind of trouble.” (Kenny, 7)

“Love; No one is sure why it happens, but I heard it has something to do with how you smell. That’s why perfume and deodorant are so popular.” (Jan, 9)

“Falling in love is like an avalanche where you have to run for your life.” (Roger, 9)

“If falling in love is anything like learning how to spell, I don’t want to do it. It takes too long.” (Leo, 7)

“It isn’t always just how you look. Look at me. I’m handsome like anything and I haven’t got anybody to marry me yet.” (Gary, 7)

“Lovers hold hands to make sure their rings don’t fall off because they paid good money for them.” (Dave, 8 )

“Love will find you, even if you are trying to hide from it. I have been trying to hide from it since I was five, but the girls keep finding me.” (Bobby, 8 )

“I’m not rushing into being in love. I’m finding fourth grade hard enough.” (Regina, 10)

Happy Valentine’s Day to all my Kindermusik Families!

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Looking ahead to 2009, we are pleased to offer an exciting line-up of Kindermusik classes with our new semester beginning Saturday, January 24th.  We have something for everyone at Masterworks Studio!

Village – Ages Newborn to 18 months

Hickory, Dickory, Tickle, and Bounce   hickorydickory-sm

Research shows the more you expose your baby to nursery rhymes and songs, the stronger those emerging language-learning skills will be. That’s why these Mother Goose-like stories and rhymes are the main theme of this class. Plus, you’ll develop research-proven communication strategies with your child through listening activities, speaking “parentese,” and sign language.

Home Materials: CD of beautifully arranged nursery rhyme and songs from class, a rhyming picture board book—Hickory, Dickory, Tickle, and Bounce, a set of Art Banners, and an instrument for music-making at home.

 

rhythm-smThe Rhythm of My Day

This class will help you bring more rhythm and routine to your baby’s day, as well as help develop lasting learning skills. We’ll show you how and tell you why music can help your little one soothe into the day’s schedule and help build a strong body and mind network for learning. You can bring home those same stress-free play and relaxation techniques from class, and incorporate them into your daily routines.

Home Materials:CD of beautifully arranged songs from class, The Rhythm of My Day—a  colorful picture board book with class themes, a set of Art Banners, and an instrument for music-making at home.

For class days and times, please visit our Class Schedule.

Our Time – Ages 18 months to 3.5 years

Fiddle Dee Dee  Fiddle Dee Dee Home Materials

We’ll meet many animal characters in our books, activities, and songs—each specifically chosen for a toddler’s emerging interests and physical skills. With silly, bumpy lap bounces, we’ll help toddlers develop rhythm while further developing their ever-emerging language skills. With a special stringed instrument emphasis in the music from class, parents can bring home the violin, cello, and orchestra sounds to help their toddlers stay happy and engaged learners at home, too.

Home Materials: Two Books—This Little Piggy Played the Fiddle and Animal Serenade, Two Home CDs, Kindermusik-exclusive fiddle sticks, and a Home Activity Book—all arriving in a cute, play-storage box that is environmentally safe and recyclable.

For class days and times, please visit our Class Schedule.

Imagine That – ages 3 – 5 years

Cities! Home MaterialsCities! Busy Places ~ Friendly FacesIn this unit, sidewalks, elevators, skyscrapers, and world-traveling photographers are the theme. Learning through the pretend play that preschoolers adore, we’ll be rhythmically busy playing storytelling games and handcrafting city “buildings” from wax paper at home so we can make a cityscape in class! Plus every activity has some at-home adaptations so the parent can take part in the learning. With a pair of resonator bars as a featured instrument, and a multicultural, jazzy collection of music, preschoolers will develop the social and intellectual skills they’ll need in school.

Home Materials:

Two books—Razupazu Toto and Down Our Street, Cities! Game Board Set, Two Home CDs—collection of multicultural and jazzy music heard in class, Family Activity Book, and a pair of Kindermusik resonator bars with mallets as the featured instrument. 

For class days and times, please visit our Class Schedule.

ABC Music & Me – ages 4 – 6 years

This semester we are offering three 5-week units of ABC Music & Me in our studio for the preschool set. 

Rhythms of the Land – Rhythms of the Land

In class we’ll explore the rhythms and sounds of Native American music. As we investigate, compare, and contrast a wide variety of drums and the materials they’re made from, your preschooler develops the investigative vocabulary needed in the sciences. When you repeat rhythm patterns at home and share the activities in your Home Kit, your child gets an early start in math, too.  

Home Kit: Jingle Stick instrument, Home CD, and magazine-style Family Guide (includes the class story Pedal Pump, Pedal Pump)

Under the Rainbow

 

Under the Rainbow – Keep your eyes open for a rainbow this month.   In class we’ll explore the concept of high and low sounds with Irish music, tricky leprechauns, and the colors of the rainbow.   We’ll also match sounds with pictures, and match pictures with the written words to build lasting literacy skills.   With more activities sprinkled throughout the story in your Home Kit, you and your preschooler can practice together the skills needed now and later in school.
Home Kit: Home CD and magazine-style Family Guide (includes the class story Under the Rainbow)  

 

Dance with Me

Dance with Me

This month, we’ll feature the music and dance of “one-two” rhythms and “one-two-three” rhythms.   In class, we’ll hear real instruments from the ballet and learn a few dance steps, too. Activities like dance, where your child follows a short sequence of instructions, helps to strengthen memory and his ability to follow directions.   At home, play the CD in your Home Kit and let your preschooler show you a new step or two. 

Home Kit: a pair of lumi stix, Home CD, and magazine-style Family Guide (includes the class story Dance of Our Own)

For class days and times, please visit our Class Schedule.

 

Wondering How You Can Afford Kindermusik Classes? 

Financial Aid

Think you can’t possibly afford Kindermusik classes for your child? 

Masterworks Studio is pleased to offer a Payment Plan to fit just about any budget. 

Enroll your child by December 16th with a $75 deposit, and take advantage of our Payment Plan by spreading your payments out from January through April.  Each month’s payment for the first child will be only $38.75,  beginning January 16, 2009.

Take two, three or even four months to pay for the 15-week semester!

Depending on which plan you choose, payments range from $38.75 to $77.50.  We believe so passionately in the power of Kindermusik that we want every child to be able to participate.  Details are available on our Class Schedule

Priority Registration for returning families is currently underway.  Open Registration begins December 16th.  Act now to get the class of your choice.

Discounts

Kindermusik families currently enrolled receive a Priority Registration discount by having first choice of classes for the next semester as well as $10 off tuition, if registered by December 15th.  They will receive a Priority Registration discount code in their class email this week.  Returning families choosing to use the Payment Plan will have the discount taken off the total tuition, thereby further reducing the amount of their monthly payments.

Early Birds can register by January 3, 2009, and take $5.00 off tuition by using the discount code: EarlyBird31278, redeemable immediately with full registration, and, using the Payment Plan, is taken off of the final payment.

Have more than one child to enroll?  Not a problem!

Siblings receive a 10% tuition discount for the second child and 20% off tuition for the third child.  The Sibling Discount applies to multiple children enrolled simultaneously in classes, even if they are in different classes or age levels.

Do you know someone who would be interested in Kindermusik for their child?  With our Tell-a-Friend Referral Bonus, you earn $10 tuition credit for every paid referral that lists you by name.  These referral credits will be taken off of the last payment for the semester or applied to the next semester, whichever you prefer!

There really is something for everyone at Masterworks Studio this semester!  🙂

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Enjoy!

 

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Most babies come into this world with only a few notable abilities at first, namely eating, sleeping, crying, and, well,……elimination, to be blunt, although not necessarily in that order.  One of the constants in that first year of life is growth – physically, mentally, and emotionally – on a scale that is only matched again in the early teen years when, yes, they’re again extremely good at the same basic skills.  Well, at least the eating and sleeping parts!  😉

However, in an article from the Daily Mail Online, dated 23rd September, 2008, researchers now tell us that even from day one, infants have a strong sense of rhythm as well as pitch and melody.   Experts now say that introducing a child to music at an early age could possibly enhance these innate musical abilities and also help them learn to talk.

The fledgling musical talent was discovered by Hungarian researchers during a study of more than 100 boys and girls who were only one or two days old.

They played the babies music as they slept and measured their brain activity.

The researchers found that their brains computed changes in beat, tone and melody.

For instance, if a key beat was missed from a rhythmic pattern, the baby’s brain registered the change.

A change in pitch, similar to that between male and female voices, also provoked a reaction.

The Hungarian Academy of Sciences study was part of a three-year European project on how the brain processes music and other sounds, co-ordinated by Dr Susan Denham, of Plymouth University.

She said: ‘What is perhaps most significant is that not only do babies’ brains register changes in beat, pitch and simple melodic patterns but they do so more or less automatically, as they are fast asleep during these experiments.

‘People come into the world with brains that are wired-up to detect patterns’.

Dr Denham added: ‘A lot of music reflects the rhythms and contents of speech. If you are listening to music you will also probably be more sensitive to speech rhythm.’

This really does make sense when you think about it.  After all, a baby spends 9+ months in utero, listening to a steady beat 24/7 of his/her mother’s heart.  I’ve also had numerous Village moms tell me that their babies seemed to recognize not only their mothers’ voices shortly after birth, but also other voices heard consistently pre-natally, such as dad or siblings. 

One Village mom in particular told me just last year that when she was pregnant the previous year, she tended to listen to one particular artist on a regular basis, almost daily.  She had an album she enjoyed listening to, with one song that was a favorite, listening to it over and over again. 

After the birth of her daughter, with all of the adjustments and changes in the family routine that results from a firstborn, listening to albums was not high on the daily schedule – until the day that mom turned on the CD player for some badly needed relief from a crying, inconsolable baby. 

Without really consciously thinking about it, she chose the album and song she had listened to frequently during the pregnancy.  Amazingly enough, the baby stopped crying within a few seconds of the beginning strains of the song.  I don’t honestly remember the song title, but I do remember laughing with Yolanda at the time; both of us agreeing that it wasn’t the usual lullaby-type song you would expect an infant to enjoy and relax with. 

Give your baby a head-start by joining us next Saturday, October 25th, or Monday, November 3rd, as we begin Dream Pillow  in our Village classes.  Online registration is available for your convenience here.

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Those strollers just keep coming!

Those strollers just keep coming!

 According to Sharon Jayson of USA Today, we are just now beginning to experience what experts are terming a “boomlet” akin to the Baby Boomers of the 50’s and 60’s of which I am one.  

A record 4,315,000 live births were recorded in 2007, a significant increase over the past few years.  It hasn’t been this high since 1957 – 51 years ago! 

The 2007 numbers are attributed to a “perfect storm” of factors: more immigrants having children, professional women who delayed childbearing until their 40s, and larger numbers of women in their 20s and 30s in the population, keeping the fertility rate high. The average number of births per woman was 2.1 in 2006, the highest since 1971.

“We have three different phenomena around birth happening at the same time,” says demographer Arthur Nelson of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Ronald Rindfuss of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, family demographer, makes an interesting point and says there is a bigger question looming than who’s having kids.

“From the perspective of schools that have to educate these children, this is a real increase in the number of births and something they’re going to have to deal with,” he says.

I know over the past 25 years that my husband has been teaching in the City Schools of Decatur, we have seen the enrollment numbers drop through the years, seen schools closed and school communities consolidated into fewer neighborhood schools, and now, over the past several years, seen the enrollments begin to climb again.

Are our schools ready for this kind of influx? 

To read this article in its entirety, please visit USA Today.

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This will definitely not be a post like you’re anticipating.  While I wholeheartedly agree with the premise of a clean, safe environment now and for the future, I never had the opportunity to support it with my five children when they were infants as today’s young parents do.  Meet the gDiaper – the breathable diaper you can flush or even compost!

The gDiaper - the breathable diaper you can flush

While I have to confess to a very healthy skepticism to a lot of advertisment PR about a company’s “green”-ness (I am a child of the ’60’s, after all!), in reading and viewing information on the gDiapers.com website, I was amazed and thrilled at what I found. 

This company has successfully found a way for your baby to have a disposable, flushable,  environmentally-friendly diaper that is actually comfortable, absorbent, and easy to use. 

From their website:

gDiapers consist of a washable, cotton outer pant and a plastic free flushable refill.  They are made of breathable material just like sports clothing.  So, babies stay dry and happy and are far less likely to get diaper rash.

Can’t flush?  It’s ok to toss flushable refills because they’re plastic-free.  Or garden compost the wet ones.  They’ll break down in 50-150 days.

Using the gDiaper from start to flush!

I checked further in their website and found that gDiapers are available here locally at Sevananda Natural Foods in the Little Five Points area as well as Whole Foods Markets.  Prices surprisingly are very comparable to brand-name disposable diapers.  Now, if only I had a baby to diaper! 😀

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Recently, my friend, Molly, posted on her blog about cute Halloween costumes that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, you can easily make them yourself, and they aren’t made of smelly vinyl possibly contaminated with dangerous lead levels.  I couldn’t resist sharing some of them here with you. 

Happy Clown

Happy Clown

Do-It-Yourself

* Attach two plastic pot scrubbers and a colored ball to the top of a cotton cap.

* Thread plastic pot scrubbers loosely with elastic as the clown’s collar

* Hot-glue or stitch three plastic pot scrubbers to the front of a one-piece jumper.

* Cinch pot scrubbers with twist ties and stitch or glue to shoes.

Dragon

Dragon

Do-It-Yourself

* Cut green sponges into triangles and stitch or glue them down the center of a pilot’s cap.

* Attach more triangles down the back of a matching bodysuit.

Bumblebee and Flower

DIY Baby Bumblebee 

Do-It-Yourself

* Make yourself a flower-petal collar from a plastic shower-curtain liner.

* For antennae, attach chenille stems topped with pom-poms to a cotton cap.

* Use bubble wrap as wings.

* Wrap a yellow towel around a baby carrier and fasten it with stripes of black electrical tape.

For additional information and costume ideas, visit Parent.com here.

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