This summer, Further Music School in Forest Hills introduced the Further Fruits program, a keyboard-concentrated music education program for children ages 3 months-4 years old. Kids are split up into four fruity groups (orange, apple, grape, and watermelon) and explore music history and appreciation, singing, and the beginnings of keyboard work that will hopefully lead to success in Further Music School's piano group or private lessons. This fall’s Further Fruits classes began Sept. 15.
Director Carrie Shi says Further decided to offer music education for younger kids because the school realized there were no pre-existing keyboard-concentrated programs in the market. Most early education courses, Shi says, focus on drums, clapping, and singing.
“We offer piano group [and private] lessons, and younger students are not really ready for those classes,” Shi says. “We know the importance of early education. We wanted to provide an introductory class and offer keyboard learning for people who want their kids, at a young age, to be prepared for future piano lessons.”
Further has spent the past few years designing the program with its instructors. Orange classes (3 months to 1 year) will teach simple melodies and songs to begin children’s music education and teach the social aspects of music. Apple classes (ages 1-2) will focus on singing, clapping, and beginning to read written music. Grape and watermelon classes (ages 2-4) will begin learning keyboard techniques and more advanced music knowledge.
Further Fruits classes also bring students on “field trips” each week–to “Germany,” for example–where students explore composers from a specific country to enhance their music history knowledge and foster music appreciation. All Further Fruits classes combine learning about keyboards with singing.
Main image courtesy Further Music School.