Rhythms is a unique movement program developed at City and County in the 1920s. In Rhythms class, the children run, leap, and skip to live piano accompaniment, portraying through motion the new worlds they are exploring. Guided by the Rhythms Teacher and carefully chosen music, the children move with spontaneity and freedom, with fantastic invention and skill. They come to understand their own environment and to recognize their own internal rhythms. The program develops movement and coordination skills and enhances harmony of mind, body, and spirit.

Along with Yard, Rhythms is an essential element in the physical development of children at C&C. Children experience increasingly complex movement skills, enhanced by the use of enticing materials such as balls, silk scarves, hoops, ropes, and balloons.

Dramatics is another core component of Rhythms. As the group is exploring a theme in the classroom, the group teacher will share their direction with the Rhythms Teacher, who in turn will set up an improvisation scenario for the children to act out. For example, if the children are tending seeds, the Rhythms Teacher might ask the children to become the seeds themselves, burrowing into the ground, soaking up water and sunlight before turning into beautiful flowers.

In the 8s through the 13s, these improvisations are organized into themes comprising much of what the children have learned about the historical periods and cultures they are studying. With the guidance of their Group and Rhythms Teachers, the children develop these themes into a play that they produce and perform themselves––the culmination of their year-long research study.
Read an issue of Currents on Rhythms and learn more about our unique program that focuses on developing strength, flexibility, non-verbal communication, dramatics, and a well-rounded sense of self and spirit.

Rhythms Then and Now

Produced by Jennifer Marck Moran

An Archival Gallery of Rhythms Photos


City and Country School

146 W 13th Street New York, NY 10011
Phone: 212.242.7802