Although I love listening to music, I never progressed past Grade 2 piano…..back when I was in Primary 2. Those days there weren’t any Kindermusik music exploration programmes as there are now, and it was impossible to find a music teacher who was keen to teach music without pushing for examinations. And maybe I’m just not musically talented either :p
We all know how important music is to the developing mind of a child. It helps hone auditory discrimination skills, pitch, timing expressing emotions, etc. I absolutely adore classical music, and I have always been keen on music lessons of some sort for the kids. But it’s never easy when you have more than one child and many classes are parent accompanied. In the past I’ve tried Kindermusik, Juzmusic, and Music For Young Children (MYC), but usually the timing, location, etc. all didn’t work out.
So I was very curious when The Eighth Note approached me to have a trial with them. Me and my Grade Two piano qualifications (which happened way back when big hair and puffy sleeves and shoulder pads were still in fashion) obviously do not know much about music lessons for kids, but The Eighth Note approach is slightly different from the aforementioned experiential programmes.
The Eighth Note teaches mostly on an individual or small group basis. For us, they allowed us to try several instruments over 4 lessons – the ukelele, the keyboards, and the drums, and they allowed me to have both boys in the lesson, but as parents with more than 1 child will know, sibling dynamics are often a little tricky, and although Abacus participated in the lessons, it was Mittens who was more actively learning. My boys have no music background, and probably even less so than Scout, since she has been going through the solfege and regularly looking at music notes at her Gymnademics classes. So if they had to start from the very basics of Do Rei Mi, they might have died from boredom. Or it might have been me dying from their whining about it.
For the lesson on percussion instruments, the boys were first introduced to the various parts of the drum, taught a few simple techniques. Then the teacher asked which song they wanted to hear, and they chose One Republic’s Counting Stars. So he proceeded to play the electric guitar AND sing the song (thank goodness he knew the words, all I know are nursery rhymes these days), with Mittens was on the drums. Scout even plonked herself on the keyboard with a shaker (actually a cabasa) in one hand and the other on the keyboards to join in! I think this point was a real a-ha moment for Mittens and really piqued his interest because it was like “playing a real song!”.
We went for the lessons at their Bukit Timah branch, and while there I had a chance to chat with the founder, David, on all things music and kids-related. They are quite well established teaching schools, and like my friend mylilbookworm mentioned in her review, David and the other teachers were also not bothered when my kids were banging away on the drums, or making a ruckus while I was trying to have a conversation. I guess sometimes us parents are harder on our kids than other people are! Most of all, I like that since the lessons are more or less individual, you have the flexibility of scheduling your time, which is so important for a busy mum of a few monkeys like me.
The Eighth Note Music School
19 Lorong Kilat #01-04
Tel: +65 6465 1418
Parkway Centre #02-02
Disclaimer: We are so thankful for this opportunity to The Eighth Note for the opportunity to learn more music, and for the teachers’ patience in allowing the entire troupe to sometimes participate in the lesson. We all enjoyed it tremendously!