Frequently Asked Questions

Browse our documentation for answers to common questions regarding Preschool Prodigies

PsP Bells v Chromanotes Bells

We recently got our own brand of PsP Bells! The colors are beautiful and the box came out great, but the intonation (fine tuning) isn’t AS perfect as the Chromanotes Bells.

They are however, more affordable, a bit quieter and totally guaranteed by our team – if you get one that isn’t working, just let us know and we’ll send you a hand-picked replacement.

 

Which PsP Plan is Right for Me

We have a couple different plans for The Preschool Prodigies Playground.

We think they’re pretty simple to understand, and this short video will breakdown the differences to help you decide which plan makes the most sense for you!

 

The Program

How long is the Preschool Prodigies Playground?

The Playground is a three-year music curriculum designed around giving children 30-60 minutes of musical activity each week. The curriculum is comprised of 6 semesters total, where each semester contains 24-30 video lessons. As of the 2016-2017 school year, semester 1 and 2 are completed and available, while semesters 3 through 6 are still under development.

Each semester has a workbook that’s fully integrated with the videos curriculum, as a well as a songbook that presents nursery rhyme classics that are appropriate for that level.

For preschools, think of the curriculum as a 3 year journey for ages 3, 4 and 5.

For parents at home, think of it PsP as the ultimate music primer. Even if your child is already 6 or 7 years old, if they’ve never had music lessons or practiced playing an instrument, they will learn A LOT from PsP. They will most likely get through the program much quicker, but the content is still appropriate and engaging if they’re learning music for the first time.

Because children learn at different speeds, we’ve provided plenty of supplemental activities. This way, if your child moves through the videos quickly and masters the songs, they won’t be left without materials. It’s also important to remember that meaningful repetition with musical notes is the key to developing your child’s sense of pitch, so we HIGHLY recommend completing each lesson several times before moving on.

What age is best for Preschool Prodigies?

While people both younger and older enjoy Preschool Prodigies, our curriculum is designed largely for kids ages 3 – 5. It is in this time period where children have the best chance of using a music curriculum to develop a life-long sense of pitch.

The Playground is an effective music introduction for kids of all ages because the lessons are relevant, powerful and enjoyable. For older kids, the videos may move a little slow, so by elementary school, little musicians should be moving away from the bells and onto the piano.

The videos also make a powerful tool for teaching music for older children and adults with learning delays. The colorful and easy to read music makes it easy for anyone to feel a sense of musical accomplishment!

What if my child is a little older (6, 7 or 8 years old)?

If your child has NEVER had music lessons before, Preschool Prodigies will certainly teach them a lot about playing an instrument and developing a musical ear. Depending on your child’s attitude toward learning, you might find that it even works better for them at this age, because they are old enough to really guide themselves through the program no problem.

That said, most of the workbook activities are designed to reinforce preschool skills like coloring, cutting, matching and patterning. Plenty of the activities are not age specific (i.e. write a song, complete the pattern, etc) and will work well with school-age children!

Will PsP Introduce too much screen time?

Many parents are concerned with the amount of screen time their children receive, and rightly so. These days, it’s unfortunately very common for adults to turn to TV or Youtube to passively occupy children. This sort of inactive viewing is indeed not good for children in high doses.

Although screen time is currently under scrutiny, experts’ concern is not with the physical screen on your computer, tablet, or smart phone, but with what you’re using that screen to show your child. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that passive screen time—or just “plopping the baby in front of a TV or film” (Hu, 2013) is the kind of screen time parents should avoid.

Experts in the same NPR article cited above suggest that this inactive screen time could lead to a “deficit in language development” because of a perceived lack of social interaction in the videos in question. This is certainly not that case with PsP. One of the hallmarks of this program is Mr. Rob’s social interaction with viewers.

Can I slow down the video music lessons for my child?

Many parents are concerned with the amount of screen time their children receive, and rightly so. These days, it’s unfortunately very common for adults to turn to TV or Youtube to passively occupy children. This sort of inactive viewing is indeed not good for children in high doses.

Although screen time is currently under scrutiny, experts’ concern is not with the physical screen on your computer, tablet, or smart phone, but with what you’re using that screen to show your child. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that passive screen time—or just “plopping the baby in front of a TV or film” (Hu, 2013) is the kind of screen time parents should avoid.

Experts in the same NPR article cited above suggest that this inactive screen time could lead to a “deficit in language development” because of a perceived lack of social interaction in the videos in question. This is certainly not that case with PsP. One of the hallmarks of this program is Mr. Rob’s social interaction with viewers.

What if I can't sing or play an instrument?

Don’t worry… that’s why we’re here! We take it super slow with one bell at a time, and we slowly scaffold our way to playing more and more complex songs. You’ll have no problem modeling the actions for your kids and there’s a good chance you’ll end up learning to play an instrument in the process!

The pitch of the bells and Mr. Rob’s singing will also help guide your and your child’s singing.

The most important thing is to remember that you are facilitating an empowering and fun learning experience for your child. Be confident in your ability to be his or her first favorite teacher! Your modeled enthusiasm—even if slightly off-key—will show your child that it is okay to keep trying even if you’re not perfect, and that sometimes the road to mastery requires a little stumbling.

Can PsP substitute for music lessons?

While the benefits of a private music education cannot be overstated, many of our students are not quite ready for expensive, one-on-one music lessons. Young children have difficulty with complex, traditional instruments like guitar and piano, and these seem to be the most popular among private instructors.

If you can find a teacher to incorporate, singing, hand signs, and bells into your child’s musical play, PsP can be a great complement to music lessons.

Preschool Prodigies provides the perfect springboard for future music lessons, once your child is ready to move beyond.

How often should I practice with my child?

The point of the Playground is to give children repeatable, predictable and enjoyable experiences through meaningful play with pitch. We highly encourage SHORT, BUT REGULAR practice. For the early learner, it’s better to get 5-10 minutes of practice each day, than to only get an hour of music once a week.

Again, we want to make memorable pitched-based experiences for your kids, and short, but regular practice is the best way to do this. If you get really into all of the materials (videos, workbooks, songbooks) you will have plenty of materials and plenty of inspiration to keep the musical play fresh and creative for you and your child!

What color-coded instruments work well with this program?

Anything that’s color coded via Chromanotes will match our colors exactly. This includes the Deskbells we recommend as well as Boomwhackers.

There are other sets of color coded instruments that ALMOST match our colors, and if you have some of those, it’s usually not that hard for kids to adjust.

For instance, some instruments color coded G as Blue (where as we call it Teal, and blue is G#). This isn’t that difficult for a kid to understand, especially because Teal is essentially Blue-Green.

Pricing & Access

The Playground seems expensive for a kids music product?

We understand that for many parents and teachers, the Playground seems like an expensive investment to make.

When you consider the cost of typical music lessons however, and all of the advantages that the Playground delivers, it’s really a no brainer for any school or family looking to give their kids a stronger music education.

Even if you didn’t complete a single worksheet in the program, and you only watched half of the video lessons inside Level 1, the dollar per minute cost of the program is still less than private music lessons. You can get a year’s worth of Playground access for $149, even less sometimes, which would get you between 2 and 4 hours of private instruction.

While there are obviously advantages to private instruction, there are also some distinct advantages to PsP that the vast majority of private instructors cannot boast. Namely that…

  • the video lessons are animated, which makes them extra appealing and accessible to young kids
  • the program is color coded, which makes the lessons error proof for teachers, parents and kids who don’t know how to read music
  • the lessons are available for replaying as many times as your kids want, and that repetition helps develop a childs sense of perfect pitch.
  • the printed activities and parent guidance means you’ll never have to worry about forcing your kids to practice something you don’t really understand. You can simply watch the video lesson with them or take it step further with the workbooks, parent follow up suggestions and the classroom lesson plans.

And if you do the program to the max, (ie completing all the videos and workbook pages, following all the lesson plans, playing through the songbooks, checking out the bonus activities), you will end up with ten times more practice material, musical activities and knowledge than you would have achieved by spending the same amount on a private teacher.

It’s not that private instructors aren’t awesome… they are! It’s just that when it comes to young kids with a lot of energy and short attention spans, most private music instructors aren’t specifically equipped to make the most of the music lessons.

Also, most young kids aren’t ready for the technical challenge of playing the piano, guitar or violin, but almost all young children have the ability to develop perfect pitch by getting meaningful play with pitch. Preschool Prodigies was designed around giving young kids this kind of musical exposure, so it takes advantage of the preschoolers unique ability to develop their sense of pitch instead of trying to force fine-motor skills and difficult memorization on young kids.

For a child that enjoys the style of our videos and likes learning about music with Mr. Rob, the value of the Playground cannot be understated. You’re unlocking a library of songbooks, lessons and workbooks that can be repeated, reprinted and expanded on in so many ways.

You can complete the program with bells and then go back to try the whole thing on piano or on any other instrument your kids are learning to play. Plus, you can jump in and practice whenever you want, and practicing will feel fun, colorful and easy!

You can also re-use all of the materials with your other kids, future music classes or with friends so that your access provides value for years and years to come!

What's the deal with Level 1 2 and 3 Pricing?

Update: The Preschool Prodigies Playground will be home to Levels 1, 2 and 3 of our curriculum. Lifetime Members and PsP Gold Members will have access to each level as they are created and released. PsP Silver Members will be able to unlock Levels 2 and 3 for a per-level charge. More specifics coming 2017.

Level 1, Preschool Prodigies, focuses on the 8 notes of the C Major scale and introduces music through slow, colorful and preschool-friendly lessons. The workbooks reinforce basic preschool skills like mathcing, patterning, sequencing, and cutting.

Level 2, School Age Prodigies (coming 2017), picks up where Level 1 ended, while pivoting more toward an elementary school audience. Level 2 focuses on reading music with proper rhytmic notation, playing duets and understanding simple harmonies, and continuing to explore musical notes with the addition of the sharps and flats. Minor chords and scales and more quick-paced chord progressions will also come into play. The workbooks will be designed to meet Elementary School Music Standards (in alignment with NAfME).

Level 3, Piano Prodigies (coming 2018), focuses more on the technique of playing the piano and transferring what we’ve learned on the colorful bells to the black and white ivories. The workbooks will be as general as possible so that both children and adults can feel right at home with the program.

Why are there discount codes only sometimes?

If you visit the PsP shop often enough, you’ll notice different promotions happening from time to time.

We run these promotions from time to time when we’re taking a break from content development. To make it easier for us to drop our prices, we stock up on lots of bells, books and packaging supplies, put extra effort into spreading the word about PsP, and then get to work fulfilling orders, on-boarding new families, and providing support where needed.

We are happy to price match orders that come within 30 days PRIOR to to a promotional periods (i.e. you buy the Playground today but it goes on sale tomorrow) but outside that 30 day window prior to the promo, we cannot price match our previous prices. This is because we cannot yet really control how much we pay for instruments, printing and digital infrastructure, and because we try to keep our prices as low as we can.

What is your refund policy?

We offer a no-questions-asked refund to each customer within 30 days of every purchase. If you are not satisfied with our product, then simply send us an email and we will refund your purchase right away.

Our goal has always been to create a happy, thriving music community. If you are not thrilled with the product, or are not enjoying the experience, then we have no interest in forcing you to stay an unhappy member.

What kind of access do I have to my membership?

You can log in from any web-connected device at anytime and you have unlimited access to the videos and workbooks once you’re inside. Have multiple kids? Print multiple copies!

With a personal license though, you are limited to being logged into one device at a time.

Not connected to the web? Consider purchasing a lifetime membership so you can download the videos directly to your computer!

What kind of access do I have to Mr. Rob and the PsP Team?

Unlike most programs like this, you have direct access to Mr. Rob for support. Want to request a specific song? Have a new feature idea for the program? Is something we made not working quite right for you?

Mr. Rob is available and happy to help everyone who is a part of the program. He has been in e-mail contact with parents and teachers almost daily since launch day in 2015 and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future! Just don’t be surprised if the time-stamps on the e-mails are in the wee-hours of the morning.

What if I can't start right away?

With a regular Playground membership, you have access to all content for one year. If you can’t get started right away it’s okay, but remember that there is a critical period in which children develop their sense of pitch.

With a lifetime Playground membership, you have access to all content forever! This is a great option for parents with multiple children, but again, don’t miss out on your young child’s unique ability right now!

Remember that some children get exposure to pitch from the day they are born via their native language, and so it’s never too soon to start giving your kids meaningful exposure to pitch.

Orders & Shipping

Can I place an international order?

Yes! As you checkout from our shop, simply enter your address and you will see the shipping rate for your zone.

We cannot guarantee tracking on international orders however. If you have a particularly large order, or if you know that where you live can be difficult to ship to, let us know, and we can provide you with a shipping upgrade to guarantee tracking.

Note: We are are going to be experimenting with some new and improved drop-shipping services during the Fall and Winter of 2016. This will hopefully both expedite our international shipping AND reduce the cost.

How is Preschool Prodigies Packaged?

To keep our costs low and your savings high, we have not yet pulled the trigger on bundling our products into a fancy case of some kind.

This means that if you order a bundle of sorts from our web store, most of the items will be shipped to you directly from their source.

We do however stock bells and songbooks in our office, and we tend to ship those together as soon as orders are placed. This way, you can get started singing and playing with the videos, bells and songbooks right away, while knowing that the workbooks and any other instruments are only a few days behind.

Note: We are going to be experimenting with some new drop shipping methods in September and October of 2016 to hopefully vastly improve the delivery experience for our customers.

I just purchased Playground access... now what?

When you purchase access to the PsP Playground, which is our library of video music lessons, workbooks, etc, you should receive an e-mail with your login information. If you did not receive your login information, see below.

Simply follow the instructions in the e-mail to login to the Playground, and start out by watching the welcome video at the top of the homepage! You can also join the members only Facebook group or jump right on into the Journey.

If you haven’t received your bells yet, but you’re eager to get started, you have three solid options for starting out bell-less.

  1. Jump into playing Sweet Beets inside the Sweet Beets chapter (head to the library/archives and you’ll find it!)
  2. If your child is super young, start out by just singing along and watching Chapter 1.
  3. Or if your child wants something more advanced while they wait, try jumping right into Chapter 8, which focuses a lot on using the Solfege hand-signs.

If you don’t receive your login information…

It is possible however, especially for Hotmail users, that your login information will be forwarded to your Junk folder or even sent back to us an undeliverable e-mail.

So, in the event you do NOT get an e-mail, simply head over to playground.preschoolprodigies.com/login and click the Forgot Password link. Then simply enter your e-mail (that you used at checkout) and you will be able to edit your password to something more personal.

It is possible though that this e-mail will ALSO get sent back to us. In the event that you still do not receive an e-mail, please e-mail [email protected] and we will get back to you with a new password ASAP.

What if I get my bells and one doesn't work?

The bells are amongst the most durable instruments in the world. No tuning pegs to mess with, no wood that can break and very few moving parts at all. This is one of the reasons we love them so much.

There is a very small chance however (i.e. it has only happened once) that you’ll receive your bells and one won’t work for whatever reason.

If that’s the case, we will happily ship you an individual bell free of charge. Simply e-mail [email protected] and we’ll get it taken care of for you right away.

Free Songbook & Starter Program

Pin It on Pinterest