There is always something special happening at the Stewart C. Meyer Harker Heights Public Library. Library director Lisa Youngblood and her staff never stop working to bring the best programming they possibly can to the community.
Music programs are nothing new to the library. Youngblood knows that music is an important part of early literacy, working on skills such as language acquisition, phonemic awareness, memory, and listening skills. It is with all this in mind that the library is offering a special music series, available only for the month of September.
The BenAnna Band Family Music Class, a virtual program held on Mondays at 2 p.m. on the library’s Facebook page, is a brand-new program for children that was designed for preschool and early elementary, though Youngblood said the program appeals to many others, as well. Best of all, the program was designed specifically for the Heights library. “No other library has this (specific) program,” Youngblood said.
The BenAnna Band is comprised of two members, Ben Norton and Anna Delgado, both of whom have backgrounds in music therapy and early childhood education. Youngblood contacted them to see if they could provide a music program for the library that not only brought in musical elements, but also emotional health for kids. Because of their unique background, they were able to do just that.
“They did a really great job putting together something just for our area,” Youngblood said.
The first episode dropped on Monday and included their original songs with lyrics that children could easily follow and sing along to. Norton plays his guitar and provides some vocals, Anna is primary vocalist and also directs the body movements for children to perform as they watch and sing. The entire program is very high-energy and full of positive messages.
Youngblood said, “(The program) is entertaining and educational. Their positivity is something we all need at this time.”
The program is more than just a singalong. One part had children at home playing a musical “freeze game” to the song “Shake, Shake, Shake, and Stop!” Another segment was about positive affirmations (which they defined in terms that small children would understand). Still another had children practicing superhero poses which they could use during the song “I Can Be a Superhero.”
Overall, the BenAnna Band Family Music Class is one that benefits children on many different levels, providing an educational element through a whole lot of musical fun.
“I think the BenAnna Band is fantastic!” Youngblood said. “I am very impressed by them.”
New episodes will drop on the library’s Facebook page on Mondays at 2 p.m. and can be accessed at https://www.facebook.com/harkerheightspubliclibrary/. Watch the first installment at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v406vhpP03XA.