Monday, January 25, 2010

Musical Playtimes

Here at Please Touch Museum, we make music in a lot of different ways. One fun way that we explore music is by putting together groups of instruments that are generally found together.

As you may know, February is "Junior Jazz" month at Please Touch Museum, so we will be having a "Jazz Café" in the Program Room made up of instruments that are typically found in jazz combos! There will be a little piano, a trumpet, a flute and, of course, lots of drums. Kids will have the opportunity to listen to some jazz music and play along, and even make up songs of their own! By doing this, they'll learn about the context surrounding different types of music, as well as hearing the differences between musical styles. Kids also be learning about how to produce different sounds and what different instruments look, feel and sound like-- all while having fun. It's the perfect example of how Please Touch Museum's mission of learning through play comes alive!

Besides exposure to different types of instruments and genres, music is important for early childhood education. Children learn by exploring the world around them, so music is a perfect introduction to math with emphasis on numbers and counting musical beats. Language and vocabulary skills are boosted as well when singing songs. In this particular music program, we will tie in geography and history by traveling around the world to explore music from other cultures. Making music is also one of the best ways to build our hand-eye coordination, self-expression, creativity, team work skills and foster self confidence and joy.

A great way that you can hold your own "jam session" at home after visiting the museum is by having a family band. You can use re-purposed objects like pots and pans and play along to different types of music, or just make up your own songs. Everyone can count off together and take turns singing verses, or you can all sing together-- however your band makes music, it's sure to be a harmonious experience for everyone!

On your next visit, be sure to check out all the different instruments and fun in the Program Room. Most Musical Playtimes take place Sundays, Mondays and Wednesdays at 2 p.m., with the exception of special performance days. For details, check the "Today's Fun" signs on the gallery floor.

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We're all about learning through play.

Join Pinky, one of Please Touch Museum's resident puppets, on an inside look into all the fun, educational things happening at Philly's Children's Museum. This blog is not just about what we do at the museum, but about the educational philosophy behind why we do what we do.