Kimberly Seyboldt, owner of Let's Play Music in Windsor, poses Thursday in her teaching room in her home. Let's Play Music seeks to teach kids music fundamentals culminating in being able to compose music. / Sam Noblett/The Beacon
Kimberly Seyboldt has a passion for music, and she shares that passion by taking elementary school-aged children and turning them into composers at her Let’s Play Music business.
Seyboldt has operated Let’s Play Music in Windsor for six years after moving to town from Tucson, Ariz. She has since grown her home-operated business from just four students in the first year to 34 musical learners in the program currently.
"What sets Let’s Play Music apart from normal music lessons", Seyboldt said, "is its interactivity."
“She teaches them difficult music theory concepts through song and dance,” said Amy Brown, a pianist and mother of three children who have been through the program. “They don’t even realize that they’re learning it.”
The learning takes place through a structured program based in the teachings of music masters Zoltán Kodály, Carl Orff and Émile Jaques-Dalcroze.
Seyboldt teaches the principles of Kodaly through the association of sound to body by using hand symbols to teach the solfège symbols. These are the set of ascending notes commonly known as do, re, mi, fa, sol, la and ti.
Orff’s teachings are learned via instrument with the progression of percussion, voice, tone bells and piano. The Dalcroze principles are used to teach rhythm through movement, which the Let’s Play Music curriculum does through with puppet shows set to classical music.
Taking classes every week, students are enrolled in the program for three years, which mimics the school-year schedule. It culminates when the students compose their own song at the end through the use of the various instruments they have learned, including voice.
One focus of Seyboldt’s teachings, and the one she believes is most important, comes through strong parent involvement. Parents are asked to come to lessons every other week for the first year and then to move to once a month in the second and third. A lot of the success is due to the parents and what the kids do at home,” Seyboldt said. “I feel lucky to have dedicated parents.”