Frequently Asked Questions (MR)

Redondo/Manhattan Beach Music School | p 310-376-8646

Why Music Rhapsody?

  • We love what we do! It’s our vision to instill the love of music, the fun of movement, and the freedom of self-expression to everyone that we teach. In addition, you are guaranteed to have the best instruction around. Our teachers come from the Eastman School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, Universidad Pedagogica Nacional, Musicians Institute, and other fine institutions from all over the world!
  • Our Proficiency in music education – Music Rhapsody began its groundbreaking work in early childhood music education at a time when few programs of this kind were offered in the U.S. We were there at the beginning, and we’re still here more than 30 years later. We have a proven track record of success in teaching music and movement, from babies to adults, and we do it all in a way that makes it fun and rewarding to learn music!
  • Our program is based on the innovative and successful “Orff Schulwerk” approach to music education. With this active approach as the foundation, we use singing, instruments, movement, and improvisation to make music come alive. Orff Schulwerk is a proven and exciting approach to teaching music to children. It gets its unusual name from Carl Orff, the European composer who created this teaching approach along with Gunild Keetman. Based on things children like to do-sing, chant rhymes, dance, and play instruments. Orff develops creativity and imagination. The Orff melody instruments are very high quality and include xylophones, glockenspiels, and metallophones as well as recorder and percussion instruments of all types. Children experience the joy of making music together in a group as they learn the fundamentals of music.
  • Our comprehensive and continuous schedule of classes that offer something unique and musically educational for every age group, from babies to adults, including 6th to 8th grade ensembles and piano or ukulele classes (some students have been with us for as many as 13 years!)
  • Our products that are of the highest quality, real instruments – not toys! They are backed and endorsed by world leading manufacturers in percussion and print music like REMO, Sonor, Alfred and more.
  • The Music Rhapsody program uses the Orff instruments like glockenspiels, xylophones, and percussion instruments, another reason why it has to be developmentally appropriate (babies would be putting bars and mallets in their mouth!) and why its easy to continue to challenge the timing and coordination of the children as they have more experience.
  • The mommy-and-me style “Make Music” classes are developmentally/age appropriate and also include a broad range of music, such as piano and orchestral (classical) music, world music, traditional folk dance music and folk songs, and jazz. Parents are also music makers in these classes, where parent and child create bonds that will last a lifetime!
  • Our piano program, Simply Piano, is internationally recognized as a leading institution in play-based piano instruction. We teach by immersing our students in the actual experience of playing, providing a subtle balance between guidance, discovery and direct ‘hands-on’ experience, and including improvisation and composition alongside learning the compositions of others. This program is available to children and adults, and we guarantee you will impress yourself by the first class!

How will my child benefit from their early-childhood music education?

  • Gives your child a head start and serves as an important link to future success.
  • Enhances brain development through proven, positive effects of music.
  • Develops physical motor skills through movement and playing of music instruments.
  • Provides a dramatic impact on language development and improving vocal and speech development through singing.
  • Develops social skills and cooperation through participation in group dancing and musical games.
  • Use of timing activities develops coordination, body awareness and spatial concepts.
  • Use of repeating patterns and counting beats develops math and literacy skills.
  • Improved listening and concentration skills.
  • Increase of self-esteem.
  • Better quality of life!

What are the age ranges for your classes? Are they "all ages?"

Our classes are generally age specific to keep the curriculum developmentally appropriate and equally fun and challenging for the MANY students who keep coming from babies to teens:

Babies Make Music: Birth to Walking
Toddlers Make Music: Ages One and Two
Kids Make Music: Ages Two and Three
Big Kids Make Music: Ages Three and Four
Young Musicians Make Music: Ages Four, Five and Six
Rhythm Readers: Ages Six and Seven
Melody Makers (w/ piano): Ages Seven and Eight
Recorder Classes: Age Eight and Up
Ensemble: Age Nine and Up
Ukulele: Ages 5 and Up (under age 8 with a parent)
Piano: Age 6 and Up

Do parents/siblings attend classes?

You are your child’s first and best teacher. Parents do attend and participate in weekly Music Rhapsody classes. Participation includes singing along with the teacher, using the instruments with your child, dancing, rocking and more. Parents will even have the opportunity to learn to play the ukulele and those skills transfer to the guitar! Your involvement shows your child that you value music and that you are a music maker, too!

When parents enroll their child in a Music Rhapsody class, they have set aside a special time to bond with their child and enjoy music together, therefore siblings are generally not allowed to be in class. Unlike other programs, SMR classes are age specific, so we recommend that each child enroll in their own developmentally appropriate class to get the most from their music education!

In the summer, we DO offer a “family all-ages” class for families who have all of their littles ones out of school! Call our office for more information.

How does this prepare my child for future music endeavors?

We love what we know! A child immersed in music and participating in regular music classes will always love music. In Music Rhapsody classes, your child learns to keep a steady beat, match pitch, be creative and self-expressed, improvise, accompany and participate in group music making. All of these activities prepare them for future music lessons and increase the likelihood of having music as a lifelong companion.

A child engaged in a Music Rhapsody program has a unique opportunity to continue their journey quite naturally into other musical avenues. Piano, orchestral, jazz, and world music are intentionally and strategically woven into the Music Rhapsody curriculum from the start. Growing up in our program, your child will hear and interact with a variety of different types of tonalities, keys, time signatures, tempos, and styles. The integration of those pieces from the earliest stages gives your child a huge advantage in any music or dance lessons.

What should I expect of my child in class?

Each of the Music Rhapsody programs is based on research and years of experience in working with children in a musical setting. The activities are developmentally appropriate and children naturally participate at the level with which they are comfortable. Some children are natural observers and will spend several weeks watching the classes unfold with seemingly little participation. Others will jump in from the very beginning and actively and enthusiastically participate.

We know that each child is unique and that these differences are completely normal. Often the observant child will be singing all of the songs at home and doing each activity with his or her parent all the time. Little babies who may even fall asleep in class will respond to the music on the CD at home by kicking, moving or looking for the sound source.
Our expectations our parents are quite simple; that you come to class consistently and participate both in class and at home, engaging your child in whatever manner is comfortable for them. If your child prefers to stay in your lap and be held or if your child needs to constantly move, both are exactly right. Your teacher will be able to suggest ways to engage and interact with your child.

How should parents participate in classes?

Parent participation in Music Rhapsody class is very important for your child. At the beginning of each class everyone comes together around the huge gathering drum and plays along to a wide variety of music while students arrive. Each class begins by singing a welcome song and parents learn to accompany the singing on the ukulele.

During the class, parents will be singing (and you can learn right along with your child if you are nervous about this!), dancing, moving and having a great time with their classmates.
The most important thing is that you come and have a fun, musical experience with your child.

Students who experience a Music Rhapsody class without their parents are, of course, encouraged to continue their music making at home and outside of the classroom! It is the teacher’s job to recommend ways for families to make music together.

How can our family explore music at home?

One of the goals in class each week is for you to learn songs and activities, then continue the fun at home with your instrument kits. Your child will have their own set of instruments and CD/DVD with many of the songs that they sing in class. There are many Music Rhapsody CDs filled with beautifully produced songs from all over the world, spanning the genres, that are absolutely appropriate for the whole family, and written so that they can sing along – and they WILL! Play the CD in the car, at meals, during bath time and at bedtime. Play along with your instruments and dance with your scarf. The better your child knows the songs, the more they will participate and enjoy their classes.

Can I try out a class for free?

Absolutely! We invite anyone who wants to provide a high quality, fun music education for their family members – of any age! – to come and visit a class for no cost at all. Don’t forget, like in all subjects, music needs to be given time, appreciation, and repetition for your child to fully flourish! Just because they do not seem 100% engaged or they feel like running around the class for 45 minutes (this DOES happen!), does not mean that they do not like music and it definitely does not mean that they should not be provided with a music education! Every child learns in different ways, and we cherish those differences! To give your family the gift of a Music Rhapsody education, call (310) 376-8646 to sign up for a free class.