Prior to one class today, a grandfriend approached me. In her hands she held a stack of children’s books. She explained that she used to teach preschool, and she was wondering if I’d like to use any of her books during story time today. I told her that we would love to use her books, and asked if she would be willing to read the story herself. She was initially hesitant, but then agreed and chose her favorite book. She held it in her lap during the first half of the class, while we sang the hello song, played instruments, and did some dancing.
Finally, it was story time. I spread out the story blanket by her chair and the children gathered near her. She opened the book and read it beautifully. She pointed out different things happening in the story and talked with the children about the pictures. The kids loved it!
After the class ended, a parent went up to her and thanked her for reading the story. She looked surprised and said, “I did?” Because of her dementia, she had already forgotten that she led story time.
Moments like this make me love Intergenerational Music Classes. This woman was given the chance to be back in her element and do what she had done for so many years: teach children. She made some real connections with the children, and although she may not remember it, I believe it was a meaningful experience.
I feel so grateful for the opportunity to bring these different generations together using the shared experience of music. If you are interested in trying out a class with your child, contact us! We would love to have you.