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BCI Burke Playground

Child playing xylophone in park

Music Play That Moves You

German poet Hermann Hesse said that “making music together is the best way for two people to become friends.” Burke’s all new PlayEnsemble™ line is designed to do just that - to bring families and communities together to play and make music with high quality outdoor musical instruments. Burke wowed us again with amazing new, high quality music products, including drums, chimes and a metallophone, all of which can withstand the elements and provide an authentic environment for collaboration and play for all ages and abilities.


Music and movement are powerful ways to promote wellness, healthy brain development and social connections. Did you know that making music accelerates brain development and promotes neuroplasticity in children? As you make music, the brain develops new pathways with each experience. This also helps children as they learn to speak and read. Making music develops and strengthens the inner ear, which is where we process and understand literacy skills.

Think back to when you first learned to speak. Did your parents teach you the alphabet first and then wait for you to write and spell before you were allowed to speak? Of course not! Making music is the same. Children and adults learn best through self-discovery. PlayEnsemble is designed in a way that provides the ideal environment for this to happen. The melodic instruments (metallophone, chimes) are concert pitched and come in diatonic and pentatonic scales set in the key of C major.

Diatonic? Pentatonic? C Major? What does this all mean? A diatonic scale is comprised of 8 pitches: C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C, or do-re-mi-fa-sol-la-ti-do. A pentatonic scale is comprised of 5 pitches: C-D-E-G-A. Pentatonic scales are great for improvising and self-discovery - they are the best notes and cannot sound bad, therefore setting up users for immediate success. The key of C major is a low-maintenance scale with no sharps or flats, making it accessible and flexible when paired with other instruments. So bring your neighborhood together, grab a guitar or ukulele, a flute, or even a tuba and jam with Burke’s PlayEnsemble chimes, metallophones and drums.


Music is an essential part of being human. No matter what language you speak or where you come from, we all understand music. PlayEnsemble is designed to bring all people together, despite socioeconomic status, physical ability or cultural differences. By bringing people together to play and make music, we can make the world a better place.


Amie Beeman is a music educator in the Greater Milwaukee area.  She earned her Bachelor of Music Education from St. Norbert College and her Master of Music Education and Kodaly Certificate from Silver Lake College.  Amie has been teaching K-5 general music for 13 years, both in Wisconsin and Maryland.  She is currently the President of AWAKE (Association of Wisconsin Area Kodaly Educators) where she is involved in local and national conferences and professional development opportunities for music educators.  Amie believes music is a part of what makes us human and that it is essential for all children to develop a love and appreciation for music.

The Making of PlayEnsemble™ from BCI Burke Company on Vimeo.