Mini Music Makers

For babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers with their parents/grandparents/carers

Every weekday morning

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Come and enjoy singing, playing instruments and movement to music with your baby, toddler or pre-schooler in our popular Mini Music Makers programme. Through our carefully planned activities we lay the foundations for musicality and musical understanding as well as social and language development.

Abingdon Music Centre has been running baby and pre-school music classes for over 40 years. Our qualified teachers and musicians aim to foster a lifelong love of music in our fun and friendly groups.

We run classes in Abingdon every weekday,  grouped according to age, from 2 months until starting school (when they can continue in our school-age programme).

FREE for babies younger than 4 months.

Younger siblings are welcome to attend classes with their older sibling for a reduced rate.

New classes are opened in response to demand at stages throughout the year.

View Current Schedule of Classes

Joining us:

New children (from 2 months until starting school) are always very welcome. Please contact the Abingdon Music Centre office for further information or to book a FREE taster session. For our Tuesday morning pay-as-you-go/drop-in classes taking place at Christ Church, Northcourt Road, feel free to just come along. All classes are FREE for babies younger than 4 months.

BABIES

aged from 2 months to 1 year are taught:

  • in small classes of 10 or fewer
  • traditional and new songs you can continue at home
  • to use safe, easy to play instruments

Babies and carers love the special one-to-one playing time they have at music, and the songs and repetition help with brain development. View our curriculum here.

We don’t mind at all if your baby needs a feed, nap or change during the class.

TODDLERS

aged between 1 and 2 years are taught:

  • in classes of no more than 16
  • to express themselves in movement and sound
  • a range of songs using puppets, props and instruments

We begin to introduce formal musical concepts such as rhythm (fast/slow), pitch (high/low) and dynamics (loud/soft) in a fun and easy to follow way, providing a solid foundation for future musical development. View our curriculum here.

PRE-SCHOOLERS

aged between 3 and 5 years are taught:

  • in classes of no more than 16
  • to build on and extend the experiences they have already had
  • to sing and fully participate in the session
  • to share their own ideas

The pre-school classes are interactive and the children will love suggesting ideas for new verses or actions. We may use story songs and humour that appeal strongly to the children.  Our classes provide an inclusive environment where everybody’s ideas are valued. View our curriculum here.

Why does music matter to your baby / pre-schooler?

  • Music can be extremely valuable in enhancing personal, social and educational development in young children.
  • By giving young children a way of expressing themselves, music encourages their creativity and improves self-confidence and self-esteem.
  • Music helps with better language and mathematical ability, better-adjusted social behaviour, and even improvements in spatial reasoning, which is the foundation of science and engineering science.
  • It’s fun and a special time to share and bond together.

[Source: Youth Music]

Why choose Abingdon Music Centre?

  • Abingdon Music Centre has been running baby and pre-school music classes for over 40 years.
  • All our baby and pre-school music classes are run by qualified teachers and musicians who aim to foster a lifelong love of music in our fun and friendly groups.  All teachers have been checked by the DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service).
  • Each session is carefully planned in order to meet the specific needs of the children in each class. All songs and activities are carefully planned by the teachers to enable the children’s musical development as well as exploring important social and language  skills. Classes are flexible and plans can be adapted when necessary. View our curriculum here.
  • We deliberately make use of repetition, often exploring similar songs for a 5-6 week block – very young children learn through repetition and this allows them to become familiar with the songs and join in during the class as well as eventually singing themselves at home. We find that parents/carers also appreciate the opportunity to learn a set of songs/rhymes that they can enjoy together at home outside the class.
  • Our teachers are also musicians and the children enjoy seeing their teachers playing live within the sessions. Our classes are deliberately fairly low-tech, instead focusing on live music. This allows the teachers flexibility to adapt within each session but also makes it possible for parents/carers to revisit favourite songs/activities from the sessions at home.
  • Signing up for a term of classes allows children and their parents/carers to develop a bond with their teacher and other families in their class as well as teachers being able to plan tailor-made sessions to help a known group of children to develop.
  • We believe that baby and pre-school music classes mark only the beginning of a child’s musical journey and your association with Abingdon Music Centre does not end when your child starts school. We offer a range of school-aged and adult groups, classes, workshops and members’ events that enable families to enjoy life-long music-making.
  • Toys and refreshments are available before and/or after some of our classes (please check when booking if this is something you require/would like).
  • Monday and Thursday morning classes take place at Abingdon Music Centre (at Larkmead School – parking is available on site).  Wednesday and Friday morning classes take place at Abbey Baptist Church, Checker Walk. Tuesday morning classes take place at Christ Church, Northcourt Road. (Weekly pay-as-you-go/drop-in option available at Christ Church only.)

How can you help?

  • We hope that you will participate as fully as your child, as the more you put in to the class, the more your child will get out of it.
  • Drop-box links to ‘Sing Hooray!’ and ‘Let’s All Make Some Music!’, originally released as CDs, are available to buy and can help to reinforce and practice songs at home.
  • We hold events for our members, focused on enjoying making music as a family, as well as themed parties for our babies/pre-schoolers.

My two pre-school children have been to AMC groups since we moved to Abingdon three years ago. The teachers are engaging, experienced and friendly and the sessions always feel special. We have always loved the emphasis on simple songs with plenty of actions, tunes that really get stuck in your head, tailored carefully to the age of the children involved. If you have had enough of “Old MacDonald”, these classes will reinvigorate a love of singing to your tiny tot!

(Jenny, Drop-in Mini Music Makers parent)

My daughter and I really enjoy attending the music group. Sally, the facilitator, is warm and friendly and also very skilled and and talented musically. The group is very relaxed and sociable and there is no requirement to have any special skill in music or singing, just follow the facilitator’s lead. The songs are fun to sing and easy to remember so they can be sung at home as well. My daughter loves exploring the instruments and other props used during the group and it has really helped with her development. I would highly recommend it. 

(Gaynor, Mini Music Makers parent)

We love Gillian’s baby and toddler music classes. My bigger boy started as a small baby in her class and was sad to leave when he had to go to school! My littler boy enjoys his class and often sings songs from it. As a musician myself, it’s great that they have fun while learning real musical skills, much more than just having a sing. It’s also great that they’re with children of the same age so they can develop together. They respond well to Gillian’s calm and expert leading – she puts a lot of thought into the instruments, toys, story books etc used. Thoroughly recommend – thank you!

(Heidi, Mini Music Makers parent)

We have been bringing our daughter to groups at AMC since she was 6 months old. Nearly five years later we are still coming! The class leaders have all been so lovely and are talented teachers as well as musicans. It’s been a joy to meet new friends and see our children’s confidence and love of music blossom.

(Becky, Mini Music Makers parent – both Baby & Pre-school and School-age)