Intergenerational Music Classes

Intergenerational Music Class

Intergenerational Music classes have become the “buzz” at the moment. And it’s for good reason too. Research has shown how the elderly’s well-being declines and that for a lot of residents in Aged Care facility there is a good portion of people who rarely receive visitors.

Since conducting Intergenerational music class from February we adapted the classes to ensure that both the children and the elderly are receiving equal value from the music class experience. Because music education is paramount for children’s developing brains, motors skills and social skills. But equally important music plays a very important role in memory, well-being and encouraging being social for the elderly.

Here are the top factors to ensure the intergenerational music class is successful and beneficial for everyone involved.

The type of music is important.

When developing a music class for children songs that encourage finger play and hand movement are fantastic. At Rhythm Rumble we encourage the children to explore keeping a beat, tempo changes by tapping on tambourines and shaking instruments. As well as teaching children how to use their voices with various methods such as the “invisible whistle” or parachute play.

In regards to music for the elderly we use music from their teenager and 20’s to help them register feelings and memories from their past. Music such as Que Sera sera, Doris Day has been a massive hit. This type of therapy is referred to music from their reminiscent bump and there is strong research that shows how music from this era of our lives has stronger memory recollection.

How to encourage connection

Just because people have a shared reason for attending your intergenerational music class doesn’t mean there will be instant magic in the room. Some people are naturally more reserved and shy when confronted with a room of strangers and some children are also shy and reserved. Over the time Rhythm Rumble has developed games that encourage the children and parents to walk around the room and talk to the residents. Such as encouraging the children to pack away the instruments and playing a musical card game.

Floor Plan Magic

Make the space work for you. Residents are not always mobile, so before the class starts position chairs in a circle. This also acts as a grid for the children not to venture out of! I always ask the parents to sit on the floor to complete a full circle. By doing this the children will be more inclined to participate because Mummy or Daddy are going to play as well.

Music Teacher is paramount.

The Music Teacher is key to having a successful class, they act as the facilitator and moves around the room learning everyones name. A great music teacher can command the attention from their students by using their voice and understanding the limitations of their music class participants so to introduce games and activities that will encourage participation. They should also have a strong musical understanding as be able to turn every experience into a learning experience.

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Happy Music Making Lola



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