Alfred's Music for Little Mozarts
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Frequently Asked Questions




What is the company behind this course?
Alfred Music Publishing Co., Inc., the world leader in music education products since 1922, is dedicated to helping people experience the joy of making music. With hundreds of expert authors and composers backed by a talented staff in six offices worldwide, Alfred publishes educational, reference and performance pieces for teachers, students and performers spanning every musical instrument and style. You can find more information about us on the About Alfred page.

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Who are the authors responsible for this course?
The Music for Little Mozarts piano course was written by Christine H. Barden, Gayle Kowalchyk and E. L. Lancaster. It was adapted for the classroom by Donna Brink Fox and Karen Farnum Surmani. You can read all about Christine, Gayle and E. L. on the Authors Page.

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How does Music for Little Mozarts relate to Alfred's Premier Piano Course?
When a student completes Level 4 of Music for Little Mozarts, they should continue in Alfred's Premier Piano Course, Level 1B. Note that it may require some extra work by the teacher on naming notes and moving around the keyboard.

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What is the Music for Little Mozarts Marketing Kit?
In the Music for Little Mozarts Marketing Kit for Teachers, you'll find tips from experienced music instructors and school managers on everything from setting up your classroom to writing a press release. Plus, you'll receive an access code to our Music for Little Mozarts marketing website, where you can download eye-catching brochure and ad graphics, as well as templates featuring Beethoven Bear and Mozart Mouse™. Find out more information about this special kit on the Marketing page.

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Why should my child study music at a young age?
Recent studies suggest that playing and listening to music at a young age improves learning, memory, reasoning ability, and general creativity. Research also supports the theory that young children who are exposed to music develop enhanced cognitive skills. Music teachers are aware that influences of music go far beyond the intellectual and physical development of the child. Studying music contributes to the growth of a well-balanced child in sensitivity, expressiveness, and the spirit essential for functioning in a complicated world.

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What will my child learn in the course?
Music for Little Mozarts combines general musicianship activities with those that develop performance skills at the piano. Skills taught in the course focus on keyboard performance, listening, pitch matching, keyboard technique, singing, rhythm, movement, and music appreciation. Children will play pieces at the piano throughout each level.

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What is my role as a parent in music study?
Parents play a very important role in music lessons for young children. Lessons are a total partnership between the child and the parents. Some teachers encourage parents to attend lessons. Even if parents do not attend lessons, they must keep in close contact with the teacher and share in the learning process at home. Parents must supervise practice and read directions to the student. In addition to practice sessions at the piano, parents should discuss the pictures in the books with the child, read the story in the Music Lesson Book to him/her, and listen to the compact discs together as a family.

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What types of things can I expect to happen in the lesson?
Each lesson will include a variety of activities chosen from keyboard performance, singing, music appreciation, coloring, movement, listening, rhythm, and use of the magnetic/dry-erase board. The activities that occur in the lesson are structured to take into consideration the young child's small hands and limited attention span.

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Should my child study privately or in a group?
Music for Little Mozarts works equally well in private or group lessons. Historically, pre-school music instruction has been conducted in groups, often with parents attending and assisting students in the lessons. This approach is very effective as young students enjoy the interaction with peers. Parents enjoy the opportunity to share these experiences with their children. When children study privately, it is very important that lessons include a variety of activities that get the student away from the keyboard for listening, singing, and movement activities.

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How many levels are contained in Music for Little Mozarts?
Music for Little Mozarts is approximately a two-year program. The time required for completion of each of the four levels will vary from student to student and from class to class. On average, each level can be completed in 18-22 weeks.

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What materials are included in each level of Music for Little Mozarts?
Three core books at each level guide children through a comprehensive approach to musical learning. The Music Lesson Books introduce musical concepts and contain keyboard performance music. The Music Workbooks include coloring and ear training to reinforce musical concepts. The Music Discovery Books feature singing, listening, music appreciation, movement, and rhythm activities. Other materials at each level include compact disc recordings, General MIDI recordings, and flash cards. A starter kit (purchased at the beginning of the first level only) contains a tote bag; Beethoven Bear and Mozart Mouse™ plush animals; and a music activity board. Additional supplementary materials are available. See “Piano Correlated Materials” on this website (on the left navigation bar).

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How often and how long should my child practice?
After each lesson, your child will get an assignment for the week. Children should practice daily for 10-15 minutes at a specific time with no interference from other family members, the television, or the computer. It is wise to practice as early in the day as possible, keep a record of practice time, and establish a reward system for effective practice. Two brief practice times are preferable to one longer session. The parent should sit near the child during the practice time, so that the child doesn't feel isolated.

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How often should my child listen to the compact discs?
Students and parents should listen to the compact discs on a daily basis. Some days you will listen to specific examples from the child's assignment. Other days you should simply listen to the entire CD as background music. Children absorb the music on the CD and it will motivate them to excel in music study.

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Do I need a musical background to teach Music for Little Mozarts?
The Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course is one of the most “Teacher and Parent Friendly” methods on the market—each page of every book contains directions for the parent/teacher. A Teacher's Guide is available, but you may never need to use it—that's how easy this course is to use! While the Classroom Music for Little Mozarts program can be taught by music teachers, it is also designed to be easily accessible to early childhood classroom teachers who may have little or no music background. The teacher is supported by scripted lesson plans and, with the music on the CDs, a teacher need not have to sing in order for the lessons to be successful.

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What is the difference between the Classroom and Piano courses?
The Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course was written to provide appropriate piano instruction for four-, five-, and six-year-olds while simultaneously developing listening skills. Designed for private instruction and group lessons, the series was designed to provide a balance between the discipline necessary for playing the instrument and the enjoyment one gets from the process of music-making. The course centers around the adventures of Beethoven Bear and Mozart Mouse™ as they learn about music.

Classroom Music for Little Mozarts is adapted from the Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course and is designed to teach general music involving singing, listening, movement and rhythm activities in a classroom setting for four-, five- and six-year-olds.

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How do I use the plush toys?
The plush toys are designed to sit on the black keys of your piano and fit comfortably in small hands. They may be used as visual aids during the story section of the lesson, in music games as outlined in the text, and to illustrate musical concepts.

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How are the Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course and Classroom Course better than competitive courses?
The Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course and Classroom Music for Little Mozarts were written by experienced music teachers who have done extensive teaching and research in the area of early childhood. The curriculums are specifically designed for children 4–6 years old, and include activities that take into account their need to move, sing, play, and pretend. The story in each lesson engages the children's imaginations through Mozart Mouse™ and Beethoven Bear's musical adventures. The story characters model the teaching concepts of the lesson and invite the children to learn more about these concepts through the activities that follow. The classroom course also includes ideas for use of a Music Center to correlate with the lessons, incorporate the National Standards for Music Education, and gives suggestions for assessment.

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What is unique about the Music for Little Mozarts Piano Course?
The entire Music for Little Mozarts series was designed to develop creativity in the young child. The story of Beethoven Bear and Mozart Mouse™ continues through the entire series and the use of the plush toys in the actual piano instruction brings the story to life. The integration of the three books, the compact discs, and flash cards at each level is necessary to gain the most from the course. The Music Discovery Books offer the most opportunities for self-expression. These books move beyond piano performance through materials for singing, listening, music appreciation, movement, and rhythm activities. Unlike other courses that focus entirely on keyboard performance activities (often beyond the natural technical skills and musical understanding of the child), Music for Little Mozarts offers a variety of activities to lay the foundation for a lifetime of musical enjoyment.

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Where can I learn more about these courses?
You can find helpful information about this course at alfred.com on both the Piano and the School/Early Childhood pages.

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