“I’m so happy to see Brian, I’m so happy to see Kate! I’m so happy to see Raina, everyone has fun in Music Class!”
Can you hear that song playing in your head right now? If you have ever attended The Music Class with your kids, chances are “I’m So Happy” will now be stuck in your brain for the rest of the day. (Don’t kill the messenger.) Did you know there’s an actual reason that the song is so “sticky”?
The person who started The Music Class and wrote this song designed it specifically to be as catchy as humanly possible. (That person also happens to be my dad. Hi dad!) The song outlines the tonic and dominant chords, two of the most common and essential chords in Western music. For any of you who took piano lessons growing up, you’ll probably remember one of the first things you did was learn how to play “do, mi, so.” These 3 notes make up the tonic chord, and the entire first phrase of the song, “I’m so happy to see Brian!”
Because “I’m So Happy” uses the two chords that we are most likely to have heard over and over again throughout our lives, the song is super easy for us to understand and remember, and that’s why it gets stuck in our heads.
The fact that the song does get stuck constantly in our heads is actually extremely important from an educational standpoint. The more your kids hear and sing this song, the more they will learn. That is because children learn through repetition. Think about when you’re trying to teach your baby to say “mommy.” How many times do you think you had to say “mommy” before your baby ever said it back? Is one million an accurate estimate? Two million? ONE HUNDRED MILLION? Most people intuitively understand that we have to repeat language ad nauseam in order for our kids to learn how to speak, but this same concept is somehow less intuitive in music. If you just remember that young children learn music exactly the same way they learn language, then you’re basically all set for the big important music education concepts. Think of the tonic chord as the musical equivalent the word “mommy!”
So, we created this super catchy song, in order to foster the repetition that children need in order to learn, and also to teach kids two of the most important chords that are a foundation for musical learning for the rest of their lives. And thus, “I’m So Happy” was born! HUZZAH! Would you ever have guessed so much thought went into such a simple song? (Honestly, I know I NEVER would have guessed if I was just peeking into a Music Class to see what was going on.)
OKAY so now that we have thoroughly dissected all of the song’s parts and pieces, do you want to watch some of our amazing, adorable, hilarious kids from all over the world sing it? Of course, you do!
Some of these students are older, some of them just giggle, and some of them are playing musical instruments in completely different keys than their siblings (check out the Sax/Marching Baritone combo.) But learning music is just like learning language, right?! I’m sure you remember your kid saying “mommy” in a million funny and mispronounced ways before they were able to use the word perfectly, right?! It works the same way in music! So when you watch this video, know that ALL OF THIS IS WONDERFUL AND ALL OF THESE CHILDREN ARE LEARNING. With joy! Which is exactly what we want.
Now sit back, relax, and pick out your friends and classmates in this video. If anyone manages to NOT have the song stuck in their head for the rest of the week…post your secrets on facebook.