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Bringing Music Education To SF’s Homeless Children

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It’s no secret that learning music at an early age is good for your brain.  It enhances spatial-temporal reasoning, and helps develop speech, hand-eye coordination and creativity.  Blue Bear School of Music outreach is helping to spread that kind of education to every corner of San Francisco.

The Little Bears Music Program sends professional musicians with early childhood teaching experience out to transitional shelters to give musical education.

Teacher Rachel Hoiem

Appearing at St. Joseph’s Family Center and the Homeless Prenatal Shelter where there are children from ages 0-5 who may not have homes or stable access to school.  Teachers like Rachel Hoiem and Dir Tanya Yule
spend time with mothers and their infants, using programming that focuses not only on music, but also on creating connections between parents and children in a calm, safe and soothing environment.

At Saint Joseph’s, a mother of 9 month-old twin girls had this to say about her experience with Blue Bear music:

“Coming into the shelter with was really scary at first and has been very stressful. I am so happy that we have been able to participate in Blue Bear music. Having time to spend with my babies doing something that we all enjoy has been so fun and relaxing. It has been a nice break to just sit down and sing songs with them and even bond with the other mothers and babies in the shelter. I appreciate how welcoming and calming our music teacher has been. I can even see my babies growing so much and learning while we listen and sing together. Thank you so much for bringing this program to us and giving us a time to enjoy being moms.” 

To donate to this program and help Blue Bear expand its outreach into our communities click here, or consider attending the Blue Bear benefit on March 19th.

mother and child at St. Joseph’s

Little Bears does group classes for young children on a sliding scale as well, classes involving children under the age of 5.  Professional musicians play live songs from Sesame Street to David Bowie (depending on age appropriateness)  Blue Bear creates an environment for toddlers to use their voices and move to a rhythm, play instruments, as well as interact with their parents and other children in an audible and communal way.

Parent testimony:  “Thanks to Blue Bear’s sliding scale, we were able to give our son the ability to experience music at a young age…which in turn, established a foundation and a love of music for life.”  – Justin W. (son Oliver started at 8 months)

If you’d like to get a taste of what goes on in Little Bears classroom, there’s probably nothing cuter on earth than this video:

If you’re interested in Little Bear Programming or know someone who might, check out this link:

Blue Bear also does musical outreach to elementary and high school students in the bay area as well as private music lessons to adults.

If you’d like to learn about Blue Bear’s awesome programming, meet it’s musicians, and other parents…while having a lot of fun in the process.  Go to the Blue Bear benefit on March 19th at The Fillmore.   Music by Allen Stone w/ Matt Jaffe & The Distractions at a legendary music venue.  VIP tickets include dinner and a hosted bar, and the live music and crowd are going to be rad.  This is a great way to invest in our cities musical future.  More info here

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