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Music classes for young children

Published: Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

Start your child’s musical adventure with one of three early childhood music classes offered by the Northern Illinois University Community School of the Arts. The classes meet on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Prelude Class is for children ages 1 to 3 and gives very young children an introduction to musical concepts with a wide variety of songs, dances, rhythm and music games, and nature sounds. The class meets on 12 Saturdays from 10 to 10:30 a.m. beginning Jan. 19.

Development Class is for children ages 3 to 5 and offers more advanced musical games and activities and is good preparation for private lessons. The class meets on 12 Saturdays from 10:35 to 11:10 a.m. beginning Jan. 19.

A parent or guardian participates in the class with his or her child at both Prelude and Development. The classes are taught by Laurie Rodriguez, an accomplished music educator, chamber musician and violin teacher. Rodriguez has taught classes and lessons for the community school for many years.

Piano Starter is a group class for beginning piano players ages 5 to 7 and meets on 12 Tuesdays from 4 to 4:40 p.m. beginning Feb. 5. Children learn basic notes and position of keys and play simple tunes. The class is limited to four students and is a good way to learn if your child is ready for private lessons.

The class is taught by long-time piano teacher and music educator Barbara Wirz-Ellsworth. She has master’s degrees in music from Germany and NIU and has taught for the community school for many years.

These and many other classes, lessons and ensembles for all ages are offered at the NIU Community School of the Arts this spring. The office is located on campus in Room 132 of the Music Building. For more information, call 815-753-1450 or visit

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