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Meet Frankie Knight of Catalina Kidz

Today we’d like to introduce you to Frankie Knight.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Frankie. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I have always been involved with music. I started playing the piano when I was 5 and knew that I would always be a musician. I was competing by the age of 10 and performed with the Utah Symphony by the age of 12. I continued my music instruction through college, Principia College in Elsah IL. Having traveled to Spain, Germany, and around the United States performing I got burnt out very quickly. By the time I graduated college I never wanted to see a piano again. I did a complete about-face and went into teaching general music at a private school, Berkeley Hall in Southern California. I loved it and it allowed me to regrow my love of the piano.

After 11 years of teaching, I became a mom and took time off to raise my family. Knowing that I wanted to instill the love of music into my kids I started taking them to a local music class called “Melodies and Me”. I became good friends with the teacher and she confided in me that she was going to stop teaching the class because she was burnt out needed a break. I knew exactly what she was feeling. I was sad that she was stopping the class because it was such a fun and necessary class for my kid’s musical education!

I expressed my concern, “Now what are my kids going to do!?” and… She offered her music class to me! I would need to take the training course to become a certified teacher. I had planned to do just that however, It was a few years early. I had just had my 2nd child and wanted to wait until he was in school to start my own business. It was a dilemma but I had to take the chance. I took the training course, became a Kids MusicRound teacher and never looked back. I am now in my 3rd year of teaching and am loving every moment.

Has it been a smooth road?
It has been a bumpy road – My main problem I faced when I decided to take over the music class was finding child care for my son. He was very attached to me and cried the entire time he was at child care. It was brutal knowing that my son was crying while I was singing, smiling, and dancing with other children and their parents. I felt like I was betraying my own child.

Having a business handed to you may seem like the easiest way to start…. and it was a plus not starting from ground zero. But there were many costs and expenses I didn’t realize until after I had picked up the ball and start running: creating my own name and business, getting and keeping clients, advertising, keeping a business web page current, upkeep on all the tools for the business – instruments, toys, balls, etc…. paying rent for the room, travel expenses, taxes, licenses, insurance, It all adds up!

As you grow, you also face the decision about whether to add employee’s, which comes with its own set of complications and new things to learn. My husband was my champion all through the first few years. He kept on saying… if this makes you happy, keep it up! It’ll soon pay off.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Catalina Kidz – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
My business is called Catalina Kidz. I teach 10-week “parent and me” music classes tailored toward kids ages 0-5 years old. I use the Kids’ MusicRound (KMR) curriculum because it is a unique blend of fun and education, designed to inspire and teach children the joys of music while nurturing strong family and community connections. Each week we sing songs, chant rhythmic rhymes, do finger-plays, play instruments, and dance. This helps children and parents learn fundamental music concepts like singing in tune, keeping the beat, as well as a rich history of traditional music from around the world.

My families receive a curriculum CD with all the songs of that session, a link to the music-curriculum book, and the MP3 files so their music experience continues at home, in the car, anywhere that the family sings or hums one of our songs. I strive to make music a constant part of my families lives, whether they believe they are “musical” or not. The secret many of my adults learn is that kids love to hear them sing. The quality of the parents or caretaker’s singing is unimportant, it the interaction with the kids that matters. The class is also a community.

At home, the songs can be changed to help with brushing teeth or getting dressed. Mary Poppins proved that any daily activity can benefit from a song. Beyond the music, the class becomes a way for kids to learn critical social skills. Many of the children make new and lasting friends as they share musical instruments. Those friendships have persevered long after they graduated from the class. Even the adults make new friends. The class also enables a support network of parents and caregivers who trade tips on everything from playgroups and potty-training to pre-schools and pediatricians. It’s cliché to say that music brings people together, but I see it every day.

Above all, we have fun. I love music and I love what I do. I honestly enjoy singing and dancing with my class and it creates an atmosphere that is infectious where it’s hard not to have fun. Older siblings who come back for a class during school holidays, get just as excited about the activities of their younger brothers and sisters. Parents get silly, and all the kid’s eyes light up with joy. It’s a safe place for everyone to be a kid again.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love that our city is family oriented. There are so many things for us to do as a family, biking the Chandler bike path, hiking one of the many canyon trails, playing at the parks, bowling, rollerskating, ice skating, the L.A. zoo, going to the movies and out to eat. You name it, everything is 5 minutes away.

Pricing:

  • $175.00 10 week session

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Katie Moore, Dalyn Carbajal, Jessica Davis

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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