Welcome to Jitterbugs: Jazz for Kids – a family program to learn about Jazz while having fun!
Jitterbugs is a Jazz program for preschoolers. Programs run for six weeks each Spring and Fall.
During Jazz Forum Arts’ free outdoor Summer Concert season, we also host Jitterbugs Jams – free for families to attend.
Program Testimonials from Families
We think Jitterbugs is a great Jazz program for kids. But don’t take our word for it!
Watch some of the families tell you what they thought about the program and how the classes have impacted their children.
“Anyone with a child that is interested in music, this is the place to start”
“Neal is very talented, so we’re learning a lot and having a lot of fun”
“Since we started, our son has really blossomed in his love for music”
Get Tickets for Jitterbugs
Classes are held at a real Jazz club: The Jazz Forum in Tarrytown!
The Jazz Forum is bringing Jazz to a new generation of New Yorkers. The Jitterbugs program is be based on playful interactive activities, encouraging the children to participate and learn about Jazz.
We always invite guest artists to join our educator to widen your child’s the horizon of what Jazz is and can be. The Jitterbugs program dive into various Jazz themes, including the history of the music, important musicians, instruments and different Jazz eras of the past. Let’s play, sing and learn together!
Scholarships available! Please sign up using this form if you want to inquire about scholarship tickets for your kids.
Jitterbugs 2024 Spring Program
The program runs Mar 9, 16, 23; Apr 6, 13, 20 (six Saturdays), 10-11 am. (Please note we take a break on March 30th for the holidays.)
This spring we’ll be learning about The Musical Alphabet! We’ll explore different notes and rhythms with the help of our educator Neal and, as always, two guest artists who are both professional Jazz musicians.
Note: This is not a kid drop-off program. Parents are expected to join and participate during the classes to make the experience as rewarding as possible.
- For preschoolers (18mos-4yrs)
- Six Saturdays, 10-11 am
- One program ticket per child
- Class attendance of caretakers is obligatory
- Two guest artists to join
- Award-winning quality: Watch the video!
Jazz Forum Arts’ educational programs are supported by the Marcia Polayes Foundation.
Join Our Outdoor Jitterbugs jam
Jitterbugs hosts free Summer Concert events for kids, eight Wednesdays at the Dobbs Ferry Waterfront Park.
As part of our annual Summer Concerts series, families with kids of all ages can enjoy our free Jitterbugs Jam in Dobbs Ferry.
The Jitterbugs Jam begins at 5:30 PM (prior to concert) each Wednesday for eight weeks, starting on July 5, 2023.
Educational Method & Philosophy
At Jitterbugs: Jazz for Kids, we take children’s education seriously and work hard to ensure that all kids, regardless of background or experience, feel welcome to our music program.
Our goal is to create self-motivated, creative learners. Through the means of positive psychology we can create a high-gain, low-risk environment for learning through play. We recognize and celebrate that every child has their own unique needs for learning and many ways to express themselves creatively.
Core to Neal’s own teaching principles is the philosophy of experiential learning. The process of I do (teacher models how to play), We do (collaborative playing), and You do (students play independently) is the foundation for creating his lesson plans. We learn by playing music together.
At Jitterbugs: Jazz for Kids, all of this is done through movement and music. From the moment your child walks into the Jazz Forum, they are “in the band!”
Winner of The ArtsWestchester 2021 Education Award
Jitterbugs is proudly recognized by ArtsWestchester!
Jazz Forum Arts’ Jitterbugs program explores the culture, history, and sounds of Jazz and Jazz music.
We help kids understand important musical concepts and learn about innovative artists who paved the way for jazz to flourish and develop as a unique art form to this day.
Meet the Educator
Neal Spitzer’s education includes a BS in Biology from Brandeis University (1990), a MFA from The New School for Jazz Performance (1993) and a Masters in Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College (2005). At Teachers College, Neal studied Curriculum & Training, concentrating on Early Childhood Education.
Neal has been teaching for almost three decades including 18 years as The Band Director at Washington Irving Elementary School in Tarrytown, NY. In addition to running the Instrumental Band Program for 130 students, he taught General Music to children with special needs (8-1-2 classification). Neal is presently the General Music Teacher at The Round Hill Nursery School in Greenwich, CT (Ages 18 months – 5 years).
Prior to his tenure in Tarrytown, Neal was the General Music Teacher at PS16 in the Bronx and at The Woodstock Day School. He was a teaching artist for the Learning through Expanded Arts Program (LEAP) between these two school residencies. Through Project Arts and many other grants, he trained over 150 classroom teachers in 20 elementary schools on how to integrate music and drama into their existing curriculum.
Neal at the Club
Meet Neal Spitzer, Jitterbugs: Jazz for Kids Program Educator
Support the Program
As a non-profit organization we depend on your support to keep our community programs afloat. Donations are optional and completely tax deductible.
Thank you for bringing smiles to the kids in our community!