In senior residential and day programs across the country, people of all ages sing, dance, play, and swing scarves during weekly Music Together® intergenerational classes. As the children’s music-learning is nurtured, babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and their grownups also foster important relationships with "Musical Grandfriends." These unique classes are also enjoyed by the seniors and staff. Seniors look forward to the children's lively visits, the chance to share memories, and the sheer fun of these playful music-making experiences. The additional cognitive, physical, and emotional benefits for both children and elders make the Generations class a win-win for all.
Regardless of age, spirits are lifted, learning across multiple domains is stimulated, and meaningful connections are made. Children and families, especially those without extended family nearby, discover the value of intergenerational relationships and become more comfortable engaging with older adults. Elder participants enjoy witnessing children’s joyful music-making and find a sense of purpose in being a part of young children’s learning, which combats isolation and depression.
"There is so much joy, so much love, and so much laughter in a Generations Class from the residents, the children and the parents and caregivers. From a little girl who reaches out her arms to get a hug from a 'grandma,' to the beautiful combination of all voices—young, old, and in between—singing 'My Bonnie,' during the lullaby, the sense of joy and harmonious interaction is magnificent. There is nothing else like it."