Even four year olds can appreciate music. Here are some ways to bring music into your child’s world.
I’ve just witnessed the magic of music and again am overwhelmed by its power. At kindergarten music is always included in our day knowing fully well the benefits the children get from it. Who doesn’t remember when as a child you’d be humming or singing at the top of your voice without a care in the world? Didn’t that feel nice? And what’s a better place to do this than with the company of like minded, fun-loving individuals like yourself? That’s what makes kindergarten a magical place. It’s still a place where there is no such thing as you can’t do it. But that’s another story. At kindergarten we encourage to laugh, dance, sing to their heart’s content knowing fully well the not only the rhythmic but verbal advantages a child can get from music not to mention the artistic advantages?
At our kindergarten we have a variety of nationalities and sometimes we get people who come in who don’t speak a word of English. At four years of age I’ve seen Korean children come into school totally knowing no English, spend the day singing and dancing and leave after 2 weeks chattering away as if they had been talking English all their lives. Although I cannot attribute their learning of the language totally to song, they gain so much from it.
One day in Kindy a Korean mother came in and sang some Korean songs to us in her language. She called the Korean children to come up and do the actions of the songs and they did quite willingly. In no time at all even the English speakers were humming and singing the Korean song as well as doing the actions. It was a fun time for all !
Here are some ways to integrate music into your child’s world:
1) Hum as you do your work – It not only relaxes you, it introduces the child to the fact that mom is humming as she works so this must be fun.
2) Sing with your child about what you are going to do – Be happy and sing “I am going to bake a cake, bake a cake, bake a cake,” or whatever you are doing at the moment. Your children will sing with you and then make their own words to the song.
3) Rock and sing your baby to sleep – Babies love the rocking motion of the rocking chair and will fall asleep even faster when mom/dad sings to them.
4) When a child does rhythmic play like pounding clay or digging in the dirt improvise vocal or body rhythmic sounds to accompany the movement.
5) When pushing a child on the swing – Improvise a song incorporating the child’s name, and while acommodating the ups and downs of the swing’s movement. “Up, up up little (child’s name).” Up, up, up you go. Down, down, down little (child’s name) down you go and round.”
6) Play outdoors – Encourage children to notice and imitate the sounds and music of nature. The sounds of the birds, or follow the movement of the butterfly.
7) When looking for a child – Sing out the child’s name. ”Oh where, oh where has little Annie gone. Oh where Oh where can she be?” or so on.
When the child puts a doll to bed – Encourage the child to sing a lullaby.
9) When children bang on a tin can – Encourage the children to ” find another sound.” Preferably more musical than this one.
10) Sing! – Remember all children want to do what you want to do. So belt it out!
Published in: Family