Music Groups

One of my greatest pleasures of being a new parent, aside from the love I get and give, is reconnecting with child like communication and games. I love going with Mia to her music group for several Wednesday morning sessions. It was me and the kids and the moms and a skilled kids musician with a sweet voice and smile who sprinkles kids rhythms with folk tunes.

Debra uses lots of aids, a felt painting, large puppets, bags of plush toys, choo choo trains and musical instruments. Of course she has 'super' bubbles. So a medley of train folk songs would be started by her energetically spilling 20 little toy trains and then asking the kids, Who has the yellow train, Who has the red train? The bag of veils are for the kids and parents to pull over their heads during the Sleeping Bunnies song. Just as energetically she encourages everyone to clean up the items in seconds.

At SickKids there is the Bear Theatre with regular performances for kids and occasional concerts and one on one music through Child Life in the private rooms however there appears to be no small music groups. So I asked the only two professional musicians I know, hey, would you be interested in a committed kids group at SickKids and both were completely enthusiastic. I first asked Treasa Levasseur as I had listened to her bands during our time at SickKids, I knew she ran children's groups and she had played at Sasha's unveiling. A Time Magazine Canada review of her latest album puts her energy into perspective: "The CD [Not a Straight Line] is an impressive achievement for the 32-year-old Torontonian, who spends her days traveling in a van full of instruments making house calls to teach music to children."

Caron Mills of Child Life at SickKids was also enthusiastic when we connected by phone this week. She will pull together input from her team so we can look at venues. With the support of Child Life the kids can come from all around the hospital for a weekly session in a playroom. With maybe an emphasis on getting the dads out to have fun and bond with their kids which naturally gives the moms a little break.

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