“It began as a heartbeat and sprouted a rhyme…” We are all musical beings. It’s why babies respond to music in utero, why toddlers do that adorable little bounce-dance to music, and why preschoolers and big kids love to sing and play instruments. But how exactly do you encourage that song in your child’s heart? Here are four simple suggestions.
Sing to your child. You may think your voice is only good enough for the shower, but to your child, your voice is the sweetest, best sound in the whole world. Babies especially respond to the soothing sounds of the lullaby you sing, but you also model using your voice to express yourself when you sing to or with your older child. Singing is also a great “together” activity. Before naps, in the kitchen, during bath time, in the car – all of these are perfect times to hum and sing along.
Keep the music playing. With music that streams on our phones, internet radio stations that play our favorites at the touch of a button, and even still some CD players in our cars, it’s easy to fill your child’s environment with music. But it does take some intentionality. Not only will you be able to expose your child to a wide variety of music and begin to shape their musical preferences, but you can also use music to bring out a smile, inspire a cuddle, or chase away the grumpies with an impromptu dance around the kitchen.
Invest in some age-appropriate instruments. Just google “early childhood instruments” and you’ll get all kinds of ideas, from bells to shakers to sticks to drums. Most reputable sources will clearly identify which instruments are safety-tested for which age groups, and typically the safety-test is also a good guideline for what is developmentally appropriate as well. Keep the instruments handy, perhaps in a container near your child’s favorite basket of books.
Keep your child enrolled in Kindermusik. A weekly music class is one of the very best ways to enhance your child’s musical development and natural love of music. You’ll be amazed at how a gently structured, delightful weekly music class will maximize the rich benefits of early music instruction and capitalize on that critical early window of opportunity. In addition to providing a social outlet for you in a small class with friends you really get to know and enjoy, a weekly music class also gives you a lot of musical inspiration and ready resources for making music a part of your daily routine at home in between the weekly class.
Fill their little days with Kindermusik and we promise, you’ll fill their hearts to overflowing with hugs, songs, dances, rhymes, and a love of music you’ll both treasure and remember for a long time to come.