Welcome to Locally Grown! Locally Grown introduces you to the people and stories behind local Lake County businesses. This month’s featured business is Knight Music Academy, a community music school in Lake Zurich.
“I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.“-Plato
Whether or not you realize it, music surrounds us in our daily lives. A movie soundtrack, a radio jingle, the intro to your favorite show, the song you hum as you wash the dishes–music is all around us. Music is more than background noise though. According to Children’s Music Workshop, playing an instrument can help develop hand-eye coordination, encourage creativity, and enhance math skills. Recent research from Northwestern University concludes that “regular music-making strengthens non-musical brain functions, such as memory, attention, language skills and reading skills.” At Knight Music Academy in Lake Zurich, their bachelor’s and master’s-degreed musicians teach musical skills while building a life-long love of music and the arts. And you don’t have to wait until your little prodigy can reach the piano keys… KMA’s classes start at age one!
I had the opportunity to attend one of Knight Music Academy’s Mini Mozart Classes with my girls (ages 11 months and 4). While there was lots of singing involved, this definitely was not your typical “Old MacDonald” sing-along class. The curriculum was crafted with the purpose of intentional music education. Not only did the kids, and their accompanying adults, get a chance to sing, they also experienced rhythm and tempo, making music with their own instruments, repeating musical sequences, sensory exploration, and whole body movement, as well as crucial social skills like sharing, turn taking and team work. Not to mention the additional benefit of adult-child bonding.
The class started out with open play set to classical music with simple toys and books. This gave the children an opportunity to settle in and get comfortable, as well as interact with other little musicians their age. Then the face-paced class started with songs, motions, and movement designed to engage their minds as well as their bodies. My daughter’s favorite part of class was opportunity to play her very own musical instruments. The students practiced sharing, rhythm, tempo, and name association while taking turns playing a large drum and a small triangle. Then they had the chance to play their own instruments with shakers, bells, and wood blocks. Senses were also engaged with pieces of tulle that fell from the sky like snow and were thrown in a pretend snowball fight. Finally, our large muscles were exercised to the music as we marched, tiptoed, stopped, and started in circles around the room.
Mini Mozart classes are appropriate for ages 1-4, and they offer a secondary class which meets in Volo teaching older students. If you are looking for more technical musical instruction, Knight Music Academy offers individual and group lessons as well for children 5 and older. They can choose from piano, guitar (electric and acoustic), flute, violin, viola, cello, drums, and voice.
Also unique to this academy is the opportunity for students to perform in a group setting, furthering their musical ability as well as sense of team work and cooperation. KMA offers a minimum of three performance opportunities per school year for its students. Knight Music Academy also offers classes and other enrichment opportunities others do not, including an annual guitar workshop, a youth guitar ensemble, an adult flute and guitar ensemble, and group voice class. Not only do group classes challenge students musically, they also develop a unique sense of accomplishment when musicians have the opportunity to create a beautiful work of art together.
Because their teachers are highly trained, you can be sure that your child is receiving an exceptional music education. Whether your child would like to pursue a new hobby or develop a skill that they will use for the rest of their lives, look to Knight Music Academy for a broad range of excellent fine art instruction.
If you would like your child to be a student at Knight Music Academy, they are offering special discounts to Little Lake County readers:
1. 10% off any boutique purchases through 2/15/16. (Excludes guitars.); and
2. 10% Off Spring Quarter Tuition when you enroll by 2/15/16. New students only.
Disclosure: Knight Music Academy is our featured Locally Grown Business of the Month. This series of features is part of a paid partnership with Little Lake County. Contact littlelakecounty[at]gmail[dot]com if you are interested in featuring your own locally-owned business in our monthly series.