Each new family enrolled in Music Together receives a booklet and DVD entitled “Music Together at Home: Helping Your Child Grow Musically.” Taking a moment to read this booklet and watch the 15-minute DVD, in which you will hear directly from the co-creators of the program, Kenneth Guilmartin and Lili Levinowitz, is the start of your experience with Music Together. We hope you will enjoy and revisit them as you make Music Together a part of your family’s life! Returning families: please let your teacher know if you need a replacement copy. We hope you will return to this booklet and DVD at various points along the way.
Coming To Class
As parents ourselves, we know that it is hard to get out of the house with kids sometimes! However, ritual is an important aspect of Music Together and the “Hello Song” is a important way to prepare ourselves for the engaging musical activities that follow. Please try not to miss this important ritual each week!
In order to provide a smooth transition between classes, every effort will be made to begin and end classes on time. We encourage you to arrive a few minutes before your class time. It will make your child’s adjustment easier and give you both a chance to catch up with friends before class begins. If there is a class in session when you arrive, please wait outside the classroom until the previous class is dismissed. This is a good time to visit the bathroom, wash hands, get comfortable and into the musical mood before your class begins!
Sing, Don’t Talk!
One of the reasons our program is so effective is because of its approach to nurturing each child’s musical development through the powerful connection they have to their most important role-models – YOU! When you demonstrate that you are engaged in classroom activities, your child will follow your lead. However, when you disengage with the activity and chat with friends during class, the connection between you and your child is disrupted and he/she no longer has the gift of your attention and important role-modeling. Likewise, if you have something to say to your child during class, try to find a musical way to do it or use a non-verbal gesture. Help us to preserve this precious 45 minutes of class time each week and the quality of the experience for each and every family.
Please refrain from eating and drinking during class. Not only are there food allergies amongst our registrants, snacks become distracting and messy during class. Please enjoy snacks before or after class, or if you absolutely must, please step outside the room with your child for a quick sip or bite and return to class as promptly as you can so you don’t miss out on anything!
Nursing and bottle-feeding are welcome in the classroom for babies that need to have a feeding during class. Please have them enjoy this from the comfort of your lap and keep bottles stored away when not in use.
Our classroom is childproofed to the best of our abilities, and although children are allowed and encouraged to move freely during class, we depend on each parent/caregiver to supervise their child’s activity so that accidents do not occur. Many children love to run in class as a natural response to the music, yet running in a roomful of babies and children can also lead to big ouchies. Therefore, we ask you to re-direct your child’s running to another safer form of movement. We also ask that you do not allow your child to hang door handles or other room furnishings. This behavior poses a danger to themselves and others and isn’t good for the care of the facility. Thank you for helping us maintain a safe environment for everyone during class!
Cleanliness in Class
It is normal and developmentally appropriate for young children to put things in their mouths. Younger children, especially, gather information about their world through oral exploration. If your child has mouthed an item, just set it aside and place it in the “Wet Box” on the teacher’s table for cleaning after class. Please note that antibacterial wipes and a bottle of hand sanitizer are always available on the teacher’s table.
Please be sure to wash your hands, as well as your child’s, before entering the classroom. You may wash them in the bathroom or use the hand sanitizer on your way in.
Please do not come to class if there is any chance that you or your child could spread contagious illness, or if he/she displays the following symptoms as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics:
1. Fever (within the past 24 hours)
2. Vomiting and/or diarrhea (within the past 24 hours)
3. Any symptoms of the usual childhood diseases
4. Yellow or green nasal discharge, Pink Eye or other eye infection
5. Common cold
6. Sore throat
8. Any unexplained rash
9. Any skin infection
If you need to miss a class, it would be very helpful for you to send an email or leave a voice message for the center director so that we might offer your spot to family wishing to do a make-up or demo class in your family’s place. Each family is allowed a maximum of 2 make-ups per session (1 during the Summer) and these cannot be carried over to another session. We encourage all families to plan their make-ups for the early-to-middle part of the session whenever possible so that we can accommodate you. Waiting until the final weeks of the session is not advised as make-up spots are limited.
If you wish to schedule a make-up class, please visit our website at www.musictogetherwhfv.com. Go to Classes > Schedule or Cancel a Make-Up. Follow the instructions to reserve your spot(s). Each child must have his/her own reserved spot so please reserve spots for siblings individually. An email confirmation of the make-up class will be sent to you and to the teacher assigned to teach the make-up class. If you find that you need to cancel this make-up class, please return to the make-up scheduler and follow the steps to cancel the make-up. Again, this will allow another family to make use of this available spot. We cannot offer a replacement make-up for one that was missed without being canceled first.
Weather-Related Class Cancellations
Our classes will not be held if the public schools in your class location are closed (West Hartford Public Schools or Simsbury Public Schools). Days in which there is a delayed opening due to weather will be treated on a case-by-case basis. In either event, any change in class schedule will be posted on our website (www.musictogetherwhfv.com) and will be stated on our answering machine message by 8am that morning. While we cannot guarantee a make-up for classes cancelled due to weather, every reasonable effort will be made to provide you with one.
Please feel free to bring along spouses, grandparents, and any other adults close to you and your child! No advance permission is necessary. If you wish to bring another child to class as a visitor (such as a sibling who has no school for the day) advance permission must be given from your teacher. If time does not permit you to speak directly with your teacher before you wish to bring additional child with you, please contact the center director with this request.
Cell Phones, Keys, Personal Belongings
Please silence your cell phones before class begins and keep them, along with keys and other personal belongings, including toys, stored away during class. We ask that you try to limit the items you bring into the room to the absolute necessities. Limiting the number of personal items we bring into the classroom and containing them as much as possible, is very helpful. If you find that an item presents a persistent distraction during class (keys and cell phones, for example!), please feel free to set them up on the teacher’s table until it’s time to leave.