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“Near the forfront of the next generation of parenting tools...Red Tricycle is not your mother's parenting aide. Readers are razr-phone-toting, book-club-joining moms who at least know what a blackberry is."

Seattle Post Intelligencer April 2006

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Get Into the Groove

Remember that rock star dream? You know the one: You're playing Shea Stadium. You've got Belinda Carlisle's hair, and Bon Jovi is your boyfriend.

Now that you're all grown up, your house still rocks, in a good-for-tots way. Tracks by Dan Zanes and Barenaked Ladies run loops on the ipod while the kiddos wail on air guitars-- probably living out rock star fantasies of their own.

No need to dash their dreams, or their hidden musical talents: check out the Music Center of the Northwest, where you and the kids can take introductory music classes in tandem. The Center offers 10-week Music Together courses for children ages 6 months to 4 years and their caregivers. These non-performance-based, 45-minute classes help kids develop their innate musicality through sing-along, move-along activities and instrument play. Take-home CDs and activity guides help you continue the musical fun even after class is over. With both a.m. and p.m. offerings Monday through Friday, the Center is set to please both early risers and night owls. Try out a free sample class before you commit.

Of course, if your budding Beethovens (and/or up-and-coming Jack Whites) are ready for mini-instruments of their own, the Center offers a Suzuki Program for children ages 4 and up on flute, recorder, violin, and viola. If memories of those childhood music lessons are making you twitch, don't worry: the Center's Suzuki philosophy is based on immersion, and on parent interaction and encouragement. The young musicians first get a grip on proper tone and technique; then, they learn to play by ear. Reading music wraps up the training. New enrollment begins in the fall.

Music Center of the Northwest
901 North 96th Street, Seattle