The More We Get Together: Nurturing Relationships Through Music, Play, Books and Art

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9781935356004: The More We Get Together: Nurturing Relationships Through Music, Play, Books and Art

The More We Get Together takes readers on a journey into the world of young children, inviting the grownups who love them to reconnect with memories of sitting in the kitchen or on the front porch singing songs, reading books, drawing pictures, sharing hugs, laughs, and special moments. In our hurry-up, dot-com world, such experiences provide a sense of community: it's not just about the music, the books and the crayons, but the relationships that are nurtured when we sing, read and play together. It really works! No experience or expertise required. It's all here: a resource that every parent, caregiver and teacher will want to use every day. Includes Travel CD.

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About the Author:

Gari R. Stein graduated with a B.A. in Psychology, with a focus in Child Development and a minor in dance. In the early 90s she developed Music For Little Folks and began writing and speaking professionally for keynotes and workshops across the Midwest, which she is still doing today. Gari is speaking and doing her workshops, nationwide.

Review:

I am extremely impressed with your incredible collection of Sing With Me kits-not just for the variety and richness of the music, but for their thoughtful and meticulous integration of music and education. You have managed to create a program that seamlessly introduces music theory and movement into an activity-based 30 minute stretch of pure fun for young children. I was privileged to be able to try out some of your CDs on my own toddler, and I can tell you from my own experience that he absolutely loved it. --Director of Children's Publishing, National Publisher

I observed Ms. Stein giving her presentation and was struck by the accessibility of the material and her enthusiasm for the measurable difference these activities can make in young children's lives. The body of studies and literature regarding early childhood development is known to Ms. Stein. She appreciates small children. She understands the seemingly minute, yet enriching movements and sounds that elicit response and foster creativity in young people. Her practical ideas for music and movement activities are based on sound principles and proven techniques. --Director of Statewide Services, State of Michigan, Department of History, Arts and Libraries

The opportunity for children to hear live classical music at such a young age is rare. I truly loved the moment when you had the children put on their tiptoe shoes and dance around the room. I love seeing the children dance with leaves, flowers and snowflakes, wave streamers, sit enthralled as you read a book, and then gently rock a baby to sleep. Your innovative ideas for movement brought much joy to so many children at these concerts. These concerts leave powerful lasting memories for children. Years later, they remember hearing classical music for the first time. --Educational Coordinator, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra

When all else fails, sing a song and dance along! It really works! That s local music educator Gari Stein s motto, and this late in the summer when it s hopelessly hot, we ran out of fun ideas about child entertainment weeks ago, and school can t start soon enough all else seems to fail plenty often. But Stein, who has spent the last 16 years helping mommy, daddy, granny, nanny, teachers (and) librarians too connect with children through musical play, comes to the rescue of all of us with her new book, The More We Get Together: Nurturing Relationships through Music, Play, Books and Art. Technically, it s her debut book, but it s jammed to overflowing with the material she s long been known for teaching. A simple music program she created for day-care centers while she worked as a caterer mushroomed almost immediately, taking over her life until it included classes, workshops, curriculum development, staff training, interactive concerts, CDs and DVDs. Clearly, she d hit a nerve. What was it about her program that people were so hungry for? First of all, she said, day cares were starving for people to come in and give them an hour of relief, really. But beyond that, music is so powerful it speaks to everyone, regardless of development. It doesn't cost anything. Everyone can do it. And I've seen it just transform groups of people - children, adults, the gamut. I think it was the music itself, rather than just me. Many of the particular aches that she sees soothed by music come from what she calls our hurry-up, dot-com world. When it comes to a child s development, she firmly believes that relationships are the key, and music and art and reading really nurture that. I think if we took a day off, off of our TVs and screens and phones, it would really be good for the kids. The media are telling us all these things that kids need, but really they need the same things kids have always needed": time to play, room to move, new things to explore, loving support and a joyful example. But don t feel compelled to take her word for it she s kept up on the research for you, and the first part of the book is loaded with citations of interesting studies examining everything from the development of hearing in utero to the neural connections between music, language and math to the heritage lost as fewer of us teach our kids the Mother Goose rhymes. The material is capable of veering off into dullsville if left alone, but Stein s warm enthusiasm and obvious delight in sharing the subject matter make it sparkle and take us right with her. What does she see when music works its magic? Sometimes I see silence. This is often a big issue with the parents, because they worry about that and say things like, She sings at home but not here. But I say, 'That's where the learning happens. Silence lets us hear in our heads what we've already physically heard. I do see the children s faces light up. I hear children singing songs to themselves when they're getting dressed or putting on their shoes. That part, she went on, is not just for the children, but for the adults. Parents tell me they now use music at the dinner table, at the changing table, in the car... And this is where Stein s talents become truly remarkable. It s one thing to give kids whom she says are hard-wired for singing and dancing anyway - enough room, instruments and time to explore music at their own pace, but it s quite another to train fully grown parents and teachers to do the same thing. First of all, any gathering of children seems plenty loud and kinetic enough to most adults long before anyone begins encouraging them to whoop it up and wiggle around. It s a rare grownup who doesn t get at least a slight case of the willies at the thought of the three foot tall mob. --Leah DuMouchel Entertainment Writer

The opportunity for children to hear live classical music at such a young age is rare. I truly loved the moment when you had the children put on their tiptoe shoes and dance around the room. I love seeing the children dance with leaves, flowers and snowflakes, wave streamers, sit enthralled as you read a book, and then gently rock a baby to sleep. Your innovative ideas for movement brought much joy to so many children at these concerts. These concerts leave powerful lasting memories for children. Years later, they remember hearing classical music for the first time. --Educational Coordinator, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra

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