Hands On! A Musical Experience, Inc. was founded based on the idea that children should have music as part of their lives. We believe that learning about music not only increases young people’s appreciation and understanding of this art form, but also enriches every aspect of their lives.
Many studies have shown that music enhances other learning such as the acquisition of language, listening skills, math skills, auditory discrimination, social understanding, and personal discovery. Our objective is to offer children an introductory course in music in an environment that is both fun and nurturing. Ultimately, we hope to inspire a passion for music in every child.
“At Hands On! we believe that learning about music not only increases young people’s appreciation and understanding of this art form, but also enriches every aspect of their lives.”
In turn, by understanding how children are taught, we have found that there are three stages that are central to their learning: concrete, perceptual, and verbal.
Since pre-school children learn especially well from working with concrete objects, instruction begins with a “hands on” stage giving children a chance to see, touch, feel, and manipulate instruments that help them acquire an understanding of concepts and relationships more effectively.
The second stage focuses on developing perceptual clarity, or the development of children’s ability to perceive sound, to become aware of differences and similarities, and to become involved in producing the sounds themselves.
These two stages lead to the verbal stage. Children begin to identify and describe the objects around them and the sounds they hear. They often display a highly creative use of language and start to develop abstract thought connecting what they experience to ideas and language.
Hands On! A Musical Experience, Inc. was founded by Samari & Len Weinberg in November 1999. Interested in creating a music program that would entertain and educate infants, toddlers, and preschool children, they decided to put their talents together and write a curriculum.
Graduated from Fordham University at Lincoln Center with a major in Comparative Literature and a minor in Photography. While attending the School of Visual Arts, she honed her skills as a photographer. After a successful career in this field, she dedicated herself to raising a family. A native West-Sider, Ms. Weinberg watched as Lincoln Center was built. When the doors opened, she attended music concerts, opera, theatre, and dance performances. She has been involved in music all her life – from private piano lessons as a child, to teaching herself recorder as a college student. As a young mother, she took her children to pre-school music programs, but found that many did not incorporate a strong educational component in the classes. She saw that there was clearly a need for a curriculum-based program with imaginative ideas that spoke to the age-appropriateness of children. With this in mind, she invited her husband, Len Weinberg, to research this project and help her set up a business.
Graduated from Fordham University at Lincoln Center with a double major in Philosophy and History. He continued his studies at The New School of Social Research as a philosophy major. After a long and successful career in manufacturing, he retired to help raise his children and returned to college. After college, a chance visit to an inner city alternative high school sparked his interest in teaching. Six months later, with certificate in hand, he began teaching at the Edward A. Reynolds West Side High School, formerly Westside High School. He had definitely found his calling. During that time, he also wrote curriculum for Global History classes and developed a program for the public school system that prepares high school seniors for the business world. He had taught for nine years when his wife suggested they collaborate on the “Hands On!” music program.
Teachers and Training
Hands On! teaching candidates are chosen on the basis of their instrument playing ability, musicality and energy. They must enjoy working with children and have great communication skills. There is a rigorous training period of 4-6 weeks with a senior staff member before graduating into the classroom.
Each class is led by a trained teacher who sings songs and plays the instruments of the orchestra while a pianist accompanies the instructor at all times.
Franchises available. Please call our studio for more information.