“Music in My Backyard” is a class created for 1 1/2 - 3 year old children and their caregivers but may be appealing to a wider age range, that is up to you. I sing some of these songs to my teenagers. :)

With so much time at home, Music and Me wants to help you make the most out of your days with a curious active toddler/preschooler by providing you with refreshing, valuable content. I have taught early childhood music for 21 years, though this is the first time I have recorded myself or put music classes online. Please email me with what you like and suggestions to make the class better ([email protected]). We want to serve you and your family the best we possibly can!

Each lesson includes:

  • videos of me teaching YOU and your child songs and musical concepts related to the topic, 
  • lyric pages of all the songs introduced in each lesson,
  • a suggestion for a book to read, a snack to make and a song to dance together to, and 
  • other songs that would be fun to listen to while exploring your backyard. 

I encourage you to customize all the songs and ideas to meet your individual needs, child’s personality/age, and your surroundings. Some of you will watch these classes with your child, other caregivers will watch them on their own to learn the songs and then engage on their own with their child. I can see doing both as ideal. Either way, repetition is the best way to learn a song. Sing on your walks, in the bathtub, and while making dinner. Post the lyrics sheets near the changing table, in the car, and on your stroller until you have them memorized. Music will light up your life!

Engaging young children in musical activities:

  • enhances parent and child relationships,
  • establishes patterns of brain development,
  • improves language development,
  • enriches creative play,
  • and brings fun discovery into your busy day.

You will be so glad you and your child took this fun class!

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Hi, I’m Kristin Shaeffer!

Life stuck at home with a young child/children is challenging enough. Now with SOCIAL DISTANCING I know many moms who are out of ideas. I am an expert in teaching music to young children. I have developed this class to bring a lasting spark into your and your child's life. The videos aren't long, perfectly suited to a short attention span.

So, hug your child on your lap and watch the FREE first lesson. I will help you bring music into your demanding day. You and your child will sing more, have more to talk about, and feel encouraged to discover your backyard in ways you that will surprise you.

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Happy singing
For the last 21 years Kristin has been teaching children music in the private, public, and community sectors.

Many parents have thanked her for bringing music into their family's life.

"I really enjoyed the class. I can really notice a positive difference in the way Zachary listens and participates. Thank you! I enjoy this time with Zachary as much as he does!"

"Honestly, we had a "hoot" and you did an excellent job - variety, fun... THANK YOU!"

"Kristin, Thank you for bringing so much music + joy into our lives. We have enjoyed our classes with you."

"Pei Suu has certainly learned a lot from the class. We are very pleased to notice the great interest that she has cultivated in music. And we certainly want to continue to develop her interest in music with you - her favorite music teacher. Thanks for the great work."


Music and the Brain: The Benefits of Music

A 2016 study at the University of Southern California’s Brain and Creativity Institute found that musical experiences in childhood can actually accelerate brain development, particularly in the areas of language acquisition and reading skills. According to the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation (NAMM Foundation), learning to play an instrument can improve mathematical learning and even increase SAT scores.

But academic achievement isn’t the only benefit of music education and exposure. Music ignites all areas of child development and skills for school readiness, including intellectual, social-emotional, motor, language, and overall literacy. It helps the body and the mind work together. Exposing children to music during early development helps them learn the sounds and meanings of words. Dancing to music helps children build motor skills while allowing them to practice self-expression. For children and adults, music helps strengthen memory skills.

In addition to the developmental benefits, simply put: music bring us joy. Just think about listening to a good song in the car with the window down on a beautiful day. That's joy.

From Brighthorizons.com


Music Enhances Connections Between Parents and Children

Music Facilitates Emotional Connections. Have you noticed how you feel while singing to your child?

These feelings of tenderness and closeness develop the bond between parent and child. Dr. Deepak Chopra, contributing editor of Parenting explains the relationship between a mother and her child: “A single-cell embryo divides only fifty times to become one hundred trillion cells, which is more than all the stars in the Milky Way galaxy.” Once a child is born, all the cells in both bodies act together to create simple but important connections between the two.

Mothers, despite all of the science involved, it’s the power of the your love — pure and simple — that can protect your child from illness, shape her future relationships, and rearrange her genes to her benefit. When you kiss your toddler after getting hurt, sing a lullaby at bedtime, or cuddle while gazing into your baby’s eyes, she’ll think you’re magical. And the truth is, you are.

“Those hugs and kisses are a force of nature,” says Dr. Chopra. Mother-child bonding is a complex physiological process that enlists not just our hearts, but our brains, hormones, nerves, and almost every part of our bodies.

I don’t know about you, but I often ran out of ideas of ways to interact with my babies. If you have found yourself wondering the same thing, consider singing, dancing or playing through music.

I recently saw a photo of a baby with giant headphones on his head. Yes, many studies say that music will make your baby smarter, but by singing the song yourself you are also strengthening the bond between you and your baby. Don’t worry how you sound. Your baby won’t critique you, but will love the sound of YOUR voice and your attention.

What do you sing? Of course, there are the old familiar songs, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” and “I am a Child of God.” There are many many more songs that you may have forgotten, but can be learned very easily. The lyrics can easily be found on-line. What matters is that you sing. Sing in the car, on your walks, when cuddling, when playing, when putting down to sleep, or any other time. Music doesn’t just enhance life and relationships, it facilitates parent and child bonding. 

From LifeOfARealMom.com

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