Happy Birthday ImaginOn!

Happy 10th birthday to ImaginOn, Charlotte’s premiere venue for children.We are delighted to be participating in the event, this Saturday, October 10th by featuring one of our special students, Will Thames, age 14. Will is an 8th grader at Alexander Graham Middle School and plays in our jazz jam band. With us since Kindermusik at age 5, Will has mastered complex jazz at a level not normally reached until adulthood. He has been blind since birth, but we were able to notice within the first few weeks of teaching him that he has the rare musical gift of perfect pitch and beyond.

Saturday from roughly 2:00- 3:00 he will perform with John, his teacher and with adult jazz drummer, Paul Walker. They will play jazz standards  with jazz arrangements of children’s classics sprinkled in. Will’s primary ambition is to become a professional broadcaster, so on Saturday he will be the MC, practicing his other special gift of rousing the crowd with his passionate narration skills. He was a huge fan of Garrison Keillor when we first met him and our early lessons were kind of a mock imitation of the show “A Praire Home Companion.” His delight in playing jazz and connecting with an audience is infectious!

On Saturday October 24th, Ms. Betsy will be following the well known Charlotte Symphony Musical Petting Zoo with a Kindermusik playdate.The Charlotte Symphony has offered children this up close experiences with orchestral instruments for many years. It will take place at the Joe and Joan Martin Center of ImaginOn from 11:00-12:30 with the Kindermusik fun beginning at 12:30. We will have a drawing for a month of free tuition. The first 20 Kindermusik kids to RSVP to Betsy  704-258-2022 that you are coming get a free “We Love Kindermusik Tee shirt!’!


2 responses to “Happy Birthday ImaginOn!”

  1. Margie says:

    Mari-Ann, I can relate to so much of this post (which was very well wrtiten, I must add). I was *painfully* shy for much of my life and still have tendencies in that direction, but have worked hard to get to a better level of comfort with others. As a baby Matthew always took a wile to “warm up” to someone or some place new. But when he was around 12 months old we started going out and doing child-focused activities in the community (naptimes didn’t allow for it any sooner). Matthew LOVED these activities and was always the child who gleefully ran to the front and was excited and well, NOT shy. However, this all changed somewhere along the line and now he is much the same as how you describe James. It’s torture for him to participate in a group activity with children he does not know well, even something he would normally think was really fun. Knowing what it’s like to be shy and self-conscious, I haven’t made much of a deal about it. But *I* participate as much as I can and keep him with me. It may be that he sits on the floor and stares at me while I act out the song motions or whatever it may be, but he is there with me. I think deep down he wants to participate, but well, shyness can be a very overwhelming thing. When he does participate in some way he is praised and I say things like, “That must’ve felt SO GREAT! You must be so proud of yourself!” etc. It has helped. The shyness with Matthew started a little before James’ current age, and just now (at about 3 1/2 yrs) it is starting to slowly get better. Very, very slowly. As in, once in a great while he’ll participate. Maybe twice a month, and that’s with us going to two different things every week. We keep going to things he really enjoys and we have plenty of playdates with children he already knows and is comfortable with. I understand how you feel; believe me, I know it’s hard when it’s your kid that’s acting this way. (((hugs)) to you and James. He will find his comfort level some day and until then I say just keep being his *safe place* to go to when he feels this way, and keep taking him to these places. If there is one place in particular that is really fun for him, go there as often as possible. For us it’s been our local nature center and community center playtimes. He still does not participate all the time, but these are things he looks forward to, and I feel offer the best incentive for him to overcome a bit of his shyness, so I am just being patient for the time being. Good grief, I am sorry this is so long!!!

    • gurske says:

      Hi Margie, Thanks for sharing your wonderful insights into your parenting with baby Matthew. AS a life long Kindermusik educator, your approach sounds just perfect. Mary Ann has been so welcoming to at ImaginOn. What a resource for Charlotte’s children!

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